Thursday, September 18, 2008

Unexpected Hassle

I'm a bit behind on everything. I discovered this past weekend that there are things one needs to watch out for with dogs in warm climates that one doesn't worry too much about up north. Sigh It was a weekend of cleaning everything washable and shoveling unpleasant medicine down her throat. But the medicine worked and apparently I caught it right away and we're back on track.

I'm finding—big surprise!—that the more consistent I am, the clearer the boundaries are, the calmer and safer Sophy seems to feel. Gee, does that sound familiar anyone? I've come to realize that efforts to be too soothing and kind can misfire badly so that neither she nor I benefit. Does that sound familiar? She is supposed to be a year or a little over that. Perhaps. But clearly, emotionally she's younger—probably due to being swapped around a different bunch of homes to be fostered so that she still has huge abandonment issues though that's getting better, too. Again, sound familiar anyone?

I'm probably repeating things I've said before. But it's useful to understand that there are consistent patterns because a) it encourages us to look for currently dysfunctional patterns we might be playing out and to create new and healthier patterns in our lives and b) it takes away any guilt that we feel what we feel and need what we need.

Fortunately Sophy seems to be a very quick learner. She's also brave. Even after a bath that left her shaking with fright the whole time, she willingly came back into that bathroom later in the day to see what I was doing. Which means that if things have scared her in the past, she can learn to get past them now and discover they don't always have to be scary. (I'm not saying she'll get to like baths, but I'll bet she doesn't shake nearly as much next time.)

I don't know if I'm making a whole lot of sense. I've had a ton of work suddenly land in my lap this week and that combined with the extra work with Sophy has my head spinning. Hope that all of you are having discoveries of your own and reason for laughter because in the end, the more reasons we find to laugh, the more we realize that NOW we can be happy.

Sending blessings and safe and gentle ((((((hugs)))))),


Karma said...

I know exactly how you feel.

Tamara said...

You are doing such a wonderful job with Sophy! What a lucky pup.

keepers said...

you and sophy seem to be really hitting it off and she is providing you a ton of things to draw on and write about, not just relating to pups but to people as well, Bravo!!

peace and blessings


jumpinginpuddles said...

lol we were just thinking we want to coem to your house so you can train some of our alters cause i can tell you they sometimes need it LMAO

gypsy-heart said...

You made perfect sense! :) Sophy was brave to go back into the room..yet I think it was more than that..she is growing in love and trust for you.

Good luck with getting everything done, and I so agree laughter is crucial!! :D

Good energies and peace of heart to you!

Marj aka Thriver said...

April: I've been enjoying catching up on your posts...especially hearing about your new, adorable doggie!

I find that my dog, Lyla, sure gives me lots to laugh about! :) She's such a funny little character!

Thanks for submitting to the BLOG CARNIVAL AGAINST CHILD ABUSE this month. You know, some of your dog-healing-analogy posts would be good for the carnival some day, too!

Kahless said...

Dogs are so wonderful.

Strong and determined said...

The things you said in this post about consistency and not being too kind ring true with parenting my 'very strong willed' daughter. I need to print your post and read it a few times this week...just to remind me to stay on track! :)

April_optimist said...

Thanks Karma and Tamara.

Keepers, Yup, she's a good teacher....

Jumping in Puddles, LOL!

Gypsy-Heart, Thank you. I think she is learning t trust me. I read somewhere that one ought to expect it to take a good 12 weeks for a dog adopted from a shelter to really settle in.

Marj, Hmmmm. That's a thought...

Kahless, Yes, they are.

Strong and Determined, Yeah. With my last dog, a collie, I kept thinking how similar he and my son were in personality. With Sophy I find myself thinking of the ways she reminds me of my daughter....