Fear, hope and happiness

Yesterday was a day full of fear, hope and happiness. Weird how you can go from one emotion to the other and back again, in a couple of hours.

It’s 4 am. I am awake. Wide awake. I haven’t been able to sleep all night. Yesterday was a day full of fear, hope and happiness. Weird how you can just go from one emotion to the other and back again, in a couple of hours.

Fear ruled for the biggest part of the day. In the morning we had to take Maus, our cat, to the vet. She has had problems with her ear for a couple of weeks. Well, new problems. As a little kitten she was dumped on the doorstep of the animal shelter in Tilburg. She had been out in the sun for ages, before they found her. As a result her right ear was all burned by the sun.


Skin cancer

When we lived in Spain, we had to put sunblock on her ear, whenever she would play outside. Despite that, she got skin cancer. A part of her auricle had to be removed. Believe it or not, even with an ear and a half, she is the most beautiful cat in the whole world.

A couple of weeks ago we noticed her right ear being thick so we took her to the vet. She assumed the thickening was a tumor. However, she also discovered Maus had ear mites and gave her some medicine. If her ear would slink, it wouldn’t be a tumor.


Scratching like crazy

Monday, after returning from our trip to Groet, we noticed her ear being even more thick, and she was scratching it like crazy. Not being very happy with the hygiene of the vet we went to, we took Maus yesterday to the vet in Bergeijk.  She noticed that Maus’ ear was inflamed and gave her antibiotics. She confirmed that Maus probably has a tumor. If not, it will be a miracle. To be sure, she took a sample of Maus’ ear and has sent it to be examined in a lab.

We had to bury Lucky, our other cat, just before we left Spain, because of liver failure. It’s too soon to bury another one. At the same time, we don’t want Maus to suffer.



The rest of the day I spent on the sofa, with Maus curled up against me. When she’s in pain, she likes to be as close as possible. Together we watched the meeting of the town council, live on the internet. We’ve bought a former dairy farm here in Bergeijk. To be able to turn it into a yoga and film studio we had to change the destination of this property.

Bureaucracy in the Netherlands isn’t a lot different from anywhere else in the world. But yesterday finally, after 17 months of paperwork, the town council approved. We can have our yoga studio. We celebrated with half a glass of wine.

I’m afraid the happiness didn’t last long. I just kept wondering what to do with Maus. So I decided to read everything I could find about cat ears, mittens and infections. On my phone, underneath the duvet, not to wake up Sara.



Maybe it is hope speaking, but I found out that ear infections lead to fierce shaking of the head. It can lead to an abscess. So it doesn’t have to be a tumor.

Let’s throw in some psychology. What if both vets assume it’s a tumor, because she is already treated for skin cancer? It’s a logical conclusion, isn’t it? But it doesn’t have to be one. I know we have less than one percent change, but less than one is still more than zero. Fingers crossed and let’s hope for the best.

PS: If I’m not running so much as I used to, it’s because either Sara or me has to stay with Maus to prevent her scratching her ear open again.

Today's training

John Kraijenbrink

The Running Dutchman

I run. Trails mostly. I am Dutch. That makes me The Running Dutchman.

I am also a massage therapist, yogi, sports science nerd, and journalist/writer. Everything I learn and research about trail running, I share here, on this website, with you.

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