a tale of two stresses

so, today i woke up thoroughly freaking out about budnik…

…allow me to explain.

budnik has had a lump in his wrist since last year. we just figured it was arthritis as he turns eleven this month and all. hell, when he went into the vet’s for a dehydration issue back in february they thought so little of it that’s where they stuck the IV.

but the friday before we left for vegas he went to get up and just started screaming. we thought it might be that or catching a claw on something but regardless i almost cancelled the trip. we got him some pain meds to get him through our absence and set him up for an appointment for when we got back. one blood panel, two x-rays, and $900 later they thought it might be cancer so they gave him a bunch of pain meds and we set up an appointment for a bone biopsy to have the lump checked.

the blood panel was done to check kidney and liver function (both ended up being perfect) to make sure he could process the anesthesia. but it also showed perfect white cell count, which to me says NO cancer. at his size and age i was nervous because he hasn’t ever been sedated before, but he came out okay from that for the most part.

i was nervous enough i knew i had to keep myself preoccupied so i did a few things that took me right up to when he was supposed to go under, then started on what i thought would be an hour project as i should hear back in that time frame – i started doing a tuneup on the UFC’s X1. i had bought plugs and the socket they recommended, but discovered after it cross-threaded and locked onto the plug while everything was still IN THE ENGINE that that was the wrong socket.

i got it dislodged but the plug remained in the engine so i decided to go see about a socket, taking one of the spark plugs with me to autozone. found a socket that fit, bought it, and came home to realize it fit when the plug was loose, but not down in the engine. i ordered one off amazon, and put everything back together, but when i fired it up it was misfiring like hell – my theory being that ill-fitting socket either loosened or damaged the plug enough that it ceased to fire.

so back to the auto stores i went, finally finding an actual spark plug socket at the third one i tried, which was, ironically, auto zone.

i came home, pulled it all back apart, and had the first two plugs swapped out in literally fifteen minutes from when i’d pulled in the driveway. but on the third the rubber innards from the spark plug socket got caught on the plug and came out of the socket which, as of this writing, is where they still remain, preventing the plug from coming all the way out and preventing the socket from being able to grip it.

i then did the fourth one – so we’re three outta four and i gotta figure how to remove rubber socket guts from deep down in the cylinder before i can get the last plug swapped.

on the budnik front, he’s home, but whimpers from the pain forty-five to fifty minutes of every hour, then tires himself out from it and sleeps, only to wake up after ten to fifteen minutes and start again. he won’t eat or drink and i have to literally force his pain meds down his throat. we’ll see where this takes us – as of this writing he may have to go back in just to get hydrated or nourished. today’s visit was another $600. at this pace i should be declaring bankruptcy by the end of the summer.

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