By DR. PIERRE B. BLAND
There is an old song by Neal Diamond ( Come to think of it, all of his songs are old but I digress). Some Days are Diamonds, Some Days are Stone. I became familiar with it back when I was in vet school one summer working as a DJ at a small FM radio station in Union Springs, Alabama. As the title suggests, it reflects on the inequities of life and reminds us to take the good with the bad. Though I respect his craftsmanship, Mr. Diamond has never been one of my favorites but this contribution to the pop lexicon has always lingered and spoken to me.
Nothing makes you reflect on your life like a lonely Friday night. As I sit in a bar, drinking club soda and eating a bag of popcorn so heavily salted it irritates the lining of my mouth, I observe all the other people who seem to be having a much better time. The festive music, people laughing and enjoying libations, and the constant traffic of people coming and going somehow seems more off putting than inviting right now. Strange how the night can be so blue and the day so bright. My work day started out strange but interesting.
The lady who works the drive-in window at that restaurant that serves the little square hamburgers was my first client. I treat myself to a sack full of those burgers every so often and she noticed the signs on my truck. She would tell me about her dog and slip a burger or two more than I ordered into the bag every visit and promised when the need arose, she would bring her baby to see me.
Her baby, a creamed colored Yorkie, awoke not able to walk. The dog presented trembling and disoriented in addition to not being able to walk. I measured the dog’s blood sugar and confirmed it was hypoglycemic. After a half teaspoon of corn syrup and a half hour, she was markedly improved but there was still something wrong. Further investigation revealed the pet had a rough night with the grandchildren and I determined she had a neck injury that had resulted in probable neurological damage. After some anti-inflammatories and pain medication they both departed happier and feeling better than when they came in. That seemed to be the theme of the day.
It continued with the pot bellied pig that came in to be spayed. The owner was so relieved to finally have the procedure performed and the positive behavioral changes that would result in her pet.
Next was the undertaker with the sunny personality and the stoic, older French Bulldog. His pet was showing some neuro- muscular issues related to age that affected his pet’s quality of life. Some diagnostic test, a couple of prescriptions and hopefully he will be on the way to a better quality of life with a greatly reduced level of pain, though the pet did a good job of hiding it. Happy owner and hopefully a happier pet in a couple of days. The theme continued to play out from patients to product sales.
It just goes to prove it is not always how you feel but what you do more often than not. I had a great day, but at the moment I choose to concentrate on this lesser part of my day and not the highlights. That is the thing about blessings, at least with me. I often have to remind myself of their presence and abundance.