Saturday, June 26, 2010

Curiosity killed the cat, but...

I can say that curiosity didn't kill me this time. Awhile ago, I mentioned that my boss decided to get a dog scale. We discussed this a bit, and I said my qualms over the scale. She seemed to understand and agreed that it would only be used for long term boarders and not on an everyday basis.

Since we are not boarding yet, the scale isn't being used. However, the location of this scale is right by the door that leads to outside potty and play areas. Thus, I pass the scale at least a dozen times a day. I've never been truly "chained" to the scale, but many times in the past, my curiosity would get the best of me, and I'd hop on a scale as free opportunity. When I did this, the scale would provide an array or emotions. On one end was sadness, feeling upset, feeling worse about myself, feeling like I failed, utter dismay at myself, or a feeling of loathness. Then, on the opposite end, was giddiness when numbers dropped, a sense of "high," elation, exuberance. However, there was also the middle end of the spectrum of feeling confused why my numbers had dropped or risen or feeling surprised why my weight stayed the same or lost or gained. Ahh such a conundrum!

This past week, I wound up jumping on the scale, but the interesting thing wasn't so much the fact of the number, a number which I've been lower and higher before, but rather the less intensity of the number. Right now, it's more a feeling of feeling "flabby" than fat. But the interesting thing is that I'm able to give myself permission rather than beration if this makes any sense. I know my schedule has been busy, that my "flabbiness" is probably due to hardly any formal exercising. This makes me question nowadays how people who are single with children with full-time jobs fit in exercise. It's not an easy task. Maybe, it's more that my priorities have changed. And for now, I'm okay with that.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Busyness is all I can say

Just a quick post that life is really busy here. Last week, we started actual daycare at the facility, so my days now run from getting up at 5:15 AM and getting home anywhere from 6:30-9:00 PM with classes. By the time I feed and spend time with all my "children" aka 3 dogs and a bunny, it's pretty late, and I'm tired. This was my first actual weekend off in awhile, so I took advantage of it. Though I got a lot done, a few of the things I had expected to get done did not get done

I also added another "child" for the weekend, my vet's standard poodle. She was a great playmate for Tovah, but she decided to muddy herself in my "swamp" area aka the "pit" which was originally a place for an above ground pool. The problem is that it is not level, so when it rains,there is a huge puddle of water and dirt.

Added to all this is the fact that my AC is not working properly. I had a guy look at it last week and thought it was fixed but apparently not. This must get fixed as the temps are supposed to be in the 90s all week here. Summer is officially here, folks!

A few other things--I've been itching for the last week in a half. I thought it was just mosquito bites, but I think some were chigger bites! I even had bites on my ears! I finally broke down and bought some benadryl spray which has been helpful. Next time, I'll just put nail polish remover on them. Now, when I go out to do yardwork, I've learned I must spray myself with Off! to keep the bugs away.

Also, something a few of you might find funny is that a., my boss. has now decided that the behavioral staff at work can wear jeans instead of khakis. She realized that the khakis get very dirty. Inside a part of me was relieved, but at the same time slightly peeved since I bought 4 pair of khaki pants. Luckily, the one on backorder could be canceled.

A few of you may be wondering how Clover is adjusting. She is doing well overall. Her litterbox training is getting better. She's learned to target my fingers and a target stick and hop onto some things. We work daily on other things like body handling, sitting in my lap, etc. The dogs are doing well too. They watch her but that's all. Tovah has stopped always running to the gate when she hears Clover shredding paper/cardboard, making some loud noise, etc. I think everyone will eventually adjust.

Sorry that I haven't been around much on twitter, this blog, or commenting on other people's blogs. I do think about each of you and hope for the best in every situation you encounter. Hopefully, I'll be able to catch up soon. Hugs to all!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Meet Clover!

Sorry for the delay, it's been a busy few days. If you have not guessed yet, the mystery animal is a bunny named Clover! She is a 3 month old mini lop bunny from Rachel. Since she was just spayed on Thursday, I've been keeping her a little less active. That did not stop her tonight as she had lots of energy and was doing what is called "bunny binkies" where they tear around the house.

Here she is jumping to grab a carrot from the top of the cardboard platform box.

As you can see in this photo, she is settling in nicely. She seems to like lying over the vent with her feet back which is evidence of a relaxed bunny!

Here are a few photos of the dogs. Right now, they are separated but all can see each other. Overall, I'm very pleased with how they are doing. The dogs are learning she is part of the family, and Clover is getting used to them.

Now, of course, since I am a trainer, I'm hoping to clicker train Clover too. Just like dogs, they can learn different behaviors. I know this will be a fun experience for both of us. One thing for sure is that baby bunnies are like puppies. They truly want to just get a "taste" of everything, so I've had to keep a close watch on any wooden or plastic object. This is where the cardboard and phone books have been coming in handy. I just redirect her to those items to save the furniture. We're also working on litter box training, but I'm positive she will get that too!

Anyway, that was the big suspense!!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Last quick teaser

I will tell you that today is the day my new furry friend comes home. We are all very excited here. Remember Quick teaser 2 with the cardboard, here are a few things I've made so far:

The red, and blue thing is a cat jungle gym, so we'll see if it works or not. It's okay if it doesn't, because she'll have plenty of other things to keep her stimulated. The other two are tunnels--one long, the other short. The second short one is in her house.

More cardboard here. LOL I also have some phone books too which are not pictured.

Friday, June 11, 2010

And the show goes on

My boss just got back yesterday. She's drained emotionally and physically. When I think about it, she's quite like me, she is able to put together things logically but has a hard time with the emotional component. She knows I'm there for her, and I often remind her that this takes time and that she is "allowed" to feel, to be sad, to grieve. Slowly, I know she'll get there, but it is always hard. Sometimes, I think I've finally gotten to a point in my life where I can somewhat dish out the advice and take it as well. That's certainly never been easy for me, but I don't know, it's weird, I want to feel and believe in what I say. Not that I haven't before, but to apply this stuff to myself as well.

Anyway, that was a bit of a tangent "I'm having a moment" thought. Despite all this stuff going on, the show will still go on. We are still going to have the open house this Sunday. I've decided that if I can and if I am secretive enough, I'm going to add a "in loving memory" slide to the end of our promo powerpoint which I made in February.

Most of me is excited about the open house to finally meet some more clients, show our facility, etc. The only thing I do not look forward to is seeing the client I mentioned in my slight meltdown post who is attending. I'm trying not to let it bother me. Who know, maybe he'll surprise me. I'll post details on how it goes.

The rest of the week has been busy running around taking care of A's dogs, a client's dogs, and my own dogs. I've also been preparing for the arrival of my new fur child, hopefully Saturday evening. I'm super excited, but it's funny, because I feel like the worried new puppy owner, hoping I do everything right. I guess humility is good sometimes.

Lastly, I've come to the conclusion my neighbor's kids are just adorable. I've talked about them here and here. The latest visit was Wednesday evening. They saw me out planting some shrubs (I got eaten by many mosquitoes!). The youngest little girl apparently really likes Tovah and calls her "Tobah." She was cute, trying to get her to sit and wanted to feed her leaves, meanwhile giggling the whole time. The other two siblings like to talk about whatever--their mom seeing a garter snake, the cottontail bunny they found, the mole holes in their yard (which I think are actually coming into my yard but I have a "moler" in Tovah), other kids they know, etc. According to their mom, last week, when they found the cottontail bunny, they waited for me to come home all day, so they could ask me what they should do with it. I guess I'm now known as the "go to" animal person.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

When support is all you can really do

I received a text message last night at 12:30 AM. I wondered who in the heck was texting me that late at night. The text read, "He's gone. Will call u Sun." Immediately, I knew it was from my boss, A, letting me know that her father had passed away.

A's mother passed away last October, and her father took that really hard as they had been married for over 40+ years, and she was his life. His health had declined since that time, but in the last month or so, his heart and lung problems worsened with him being in the hospital multiple times. During the last few weeks, home health care and hospice were consulted. A's father was also hardly eating and within the last week, dysphagia had set in.

Though most of us knew that his death was likely imminent, it comes at such a busy time for A. and all of us. The business just opened last week, classes had been set to begin tomorrow, and next Sunday is our official open house party. Now, this is all up in the air. A. had told me previously when her father passed away, she would close the business for a week. The office assistant and I would still work behind the scenes, but everything else would be shut down as this is was how they honored the deceased back in her hometown. I guess I'll know more today.

This makes me think about a lot of things. Death has a tendency to be almost polarizing in some families. I've observed it either brings people together or it tears them apart. And in some cases further than they had been. This is unfortunately what is likely to happen with A. and the rest of her siblings. Their relationship was already strained and A. felt like they did not handle their father's care well. This included saying inappropriate things while her father was in the room. Though it is doubtful that he could "will" his body to just shut down, feelings of being a burden could have made an impact on him. That, and in just the simple fact that he really did want to pass on.

The few things I am glad about is that A's father is no longer suffering, that he was able to pass away at his home like he wanted, and he is now in peace with his wife he longed for. The sad things left are that I know A. has not yet processed her mother's death, that she is numb with pain, that she will cut ties with the rest of her family, that she will not have all the support she needs (her husband is great but has a hard time with death as well), and that she is hugely stressed beyond belief.

It's hard to know exactly what to do but to make things as easy as possible for her business wise and to be a supportive friend. I hope that will be enough.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Nice smiles

I had two smiley moments yesterday and today (Tuesday). After I went shopping for some flowers, I saw a double rainbow, the first of the season! Unfortunately, I didn't have my camera to take a photo.

Then, this evening when I got home from work and let the dogs outside, I noticed the neighbors with the children. outside. I spoke about them in my first exposures post. I heard the little boy talking to his dad about my dogs. He was telling his dad that Hank was the one who barks and only has half a tail. Then, he told his dad that Daphne could not hear and that we had to use hand signals with her. He tried to show his dad the cue for her sit which was actually a down, but this was all so sweet. I showed him the hand cue for a sit and told him he was really close.

I was amazed that he remembered, especially since he was the child who wasn't able to pet the dogs due to his allergies. But he, nonetheless, listened intently.

It really made me smile, and I know he was smiling too.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

A bit of a FAIL weekend

Yes, I'm using the word FAIL here.  First, I met a new match guy on Saturday.  We met at a coffee shop and chatted.  Things seemed to be going okay, and we were going to go to a food festival nearby afterwards.  As we were walking and talking, he suddenly stops and says, "Before we go any further, I just don't think it is going to work out.  We might as well not waste each other's time."  I was kind of surprised, and could only fathom out the words, "okay, I understand."  We walked back in awkward silence before parting different directions.  That was FAIL 1.

Since I still wanted to go to the food festival, but not necessarily by myself, I remembered there was a girl who lived  close that I had never met.  I sent her a message, and she told me to call her if I was going to go.  I really had planned to go.  I had already looked at the menus of the different vendors there and had my eye set on a veggie mango roll.  Sunday rolled around, and I basically got cold feet for a few reasons.

First, my fear of driving and not finding parking overcame me.  I tend to panic when I have to park in downtown areas with lots of people and have to search for parking.  It's not just finding the parking but afraid I'll forget where I parked too.  It's truly dumb and wasn't a good excuse to go.

Then, I had this other thought.  I have never met this person (we've talked on the phone a long time ago--I've known her since I was 16, and we met in an ED chat room--you know the ones aol used to have all the time).  Though we've kept in touch over the year, we haven't really talked in depth much.  I know some of what's going on in her life through her facebook statuses and tweets, but I don't know where she is in terms of ED recovery.  I can't explain it exactly, but I just had a weird feeling meeting at a big food festival (see the irony).  I tried to give myself the option of going today, but my feelings didn't change--that and I apparently crashed in my chair this afternoon for 2 hours.

I did tell this person I would not be making it yesterday or today, but definitely said we should meet up some time.  Hopefully, she'll take me up on this offer and meet somewhere else.

Now, some of you may be asking what would have been the difference of going with a new match guy versus this girl whom you've known for many years but never met?  I don't know, but it felt differently to me.  I guess it's the thought of someone not knowing about your ED history versus someone who does.  Had it not have been the food festival, maybe I would have felt differently. And I guess I could have spoken up to meet elsewhere.

Parts of me are kicking myself for not going, making excuses, letting my fears rule me.  This could have been a good opportunity and experience.  I know I have more chances to meet this girl again, at least until December, but I'm just lucky in that fact.

I also think I'm still reeling over the latest match date.  I'm seriously not doing very well with these match dates and have come to the conclusion it must be ME.  I'm thinking about changing my profile to attract a different audience.  This doesn't mean I'm going to be completely different but words things differently.  The thing is that these men, well, they must have been attracted to my profile if they wanted to meet me.  But then, when they do, they seem to not like me at all which just perpetuates the cycle it is me!  

Even though I'm upset (rejection is tough), I'm not giving up.  However, I think I may revamp my profile to see if it will attract a different audience.  Only time will tell.