An update! Oceans, flights, hikes, conflict, beauty, and change

Well, it is time for an update! I have no clue when was the last time I updated this blog. But it’s well past time for an update. And, let’s have some ORDER around here! Bulleted list time:

Canada goose butt

The elegance of a feeding Canada goose

  1. I am suddenly distracted by a conversation happening downstairs. I will try my best to tune it out. I do not travel to other countries, so I have no reason to eavesdrop on how to make a phone service work in other countries, or buying other SIM cards, etc. No clue. Tune it out.
  2. School! Well. It was going very well until this current class. And now, HALT! I am scraping through chapters like a slug trying to complete a marathon in the rain. Hey, we’ll get there eventually. But I’ve blown my timeline.
    1. THE WORST, for me, is that I lost my Student Mentor! He got transferred to a different department. I got assigned a new one and I find myself feeling depressed while on the phone with her. She wants me to make sure I’m going for the right major for me, considering I have no interest in Accounting, kind of hate it, and fear and am bad at Math. She doesn’t understand that I am taking this horse to the end of the river. It doesn’t matter that I don’t want to be going through this river crossing. It’s the way to get there. It’s not my favorite way. I’d rather we have gone up over a mountain ridge instead. But I’m here in the horrible, dangerous river crossing that’s going to take years, but my horse is willing and I’m going to stick it out. Because, I’m not exactly young and not getting any younger, and I have no direction other than this, and I’m sticking to it, dammit.
  3. I quit the psychologist I was seeing for a while there. We never really clicked and like I’ve written sometime before, we had a serious issue come up that was never resolved and it was terribly awkward and I realized he doesn’t understand me and won’t understand me and I could never trust him again and wasn’t getting to where I wanted to be, so that’s done.
  4. My boyfriend and I are going to couples therapy now! We had our second appointment today and I really think this lady is wonderful! I feel as though she really knows the topic (couples and conflict and resolution). We had homework from Session 1 and it was helpful. This week, we have even more homework, and I’m kind of excited about some of it! ūüôā I was so excited during the appointment, when we were talking about ideas for reducing grocery store tensions, that I almost started crying tears of joy. …P.S. I am experiencing some insane PMS yesterday & today! Whew. Talk about eyes tearing up.
  5. Which is nice. Because all of that screwing around with my thyroid doses has given me Dry Eyes to the point where my eye doctor wants me to be on prescription eye stuff. In lieu of that, I’m to use Blink for very dry eyes multiple times a day. You know you have dry eyes when you put in a few drops of that stuff and feel like you’ve reached some kind of Heaven and kind of want to just keep dropping the stuff into your eyes, like a continuous stream. aaaaahhh bliss.
  6. I’m considering going back to the city college. I would take a specific Accounting class that I need to take for the online school but have a lot of concerns about. I think taking it in person first will give me a lot more confidence. Also, I could go back to weight lifting and jogging for my other credits. Then, I would qualify as an Accounting Tutor again, which would be so great. I loved doing that. It just pays so pathetically.
  7. But my stress over money is reaching extreme danger levels. I applied to a local job last week but I hadn’t seen the posting for 9 days and they’d already filled it. But they offered to keep my resume on file for the next opening, which was pretty nice of them. Man, I would have loved that job. I was so excited. I re-wrote my entire resume, which takes a lot of internal energy.
  8. Clouds in blue sky

    Clouds and Blue

    I am in love with walking along the water, even with so many people and chaos and the birds and the seals and more birds and the water and the breeze…. aahhhhh… Lovely. So I go out there a lot now to study in a coffee shop near the water. I focus much better there than I do at home, which I get distracted and do things like laundry and read about tidying and stuff. ūüôā

  9. Goodnight! 1/2 dose of clonazapam kicked in a while back and I’m in a very happy, content haze at the moment. I hate to ever lose this feeling but I can hardly see straight due to my exhaustion (I haven’t been sleeping well for two weeks)
  10. Not since I got to spend so much time with my parents and my beloved dog. ‚̧ I’ve had insomnia of epic proportions ever since then.
  11. I have been practicing music more frequently. Yay.
  12. I need to and would like to do a bunch of garden weeding.
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Everything’s fine

So, I’m pretty much back to my normal again. No mind loops of the past or anything like that. I’m studying for school again and going on walks. I’m still gardening. I’d like to practice music more frequently.

Image of a flying gull against a blue sky

Gull

Tomorrow, I will volunteer at the animal shelter and then go on a Pok√©walk with “Joe”. I think we will walk around a lake this time, instead of along the ocean. I haven’t been to that lake in a while, so it will be nice. I hope I can get myself out of bed and to the animal shelter. I’ve been having trouble with motivation. The route to the animal shelter is long and sometimes unpleasant because of the other people who ride that bus route. The vast majority of the people are fine, but sometimes the other people are not fine. At least I don’t avoid the Pok√©walks.

On Tuesday, I go again to the animal shelter and then to my psychologist. Although I’m basically my normal again already, I don’t know how I feel about this psychologist. I’m afraid to go. I’m afraid I’ll refuse to talk to him. I’m still upset, distrusting, and a little bit angry toward him. I suppose all of this resentment is just because he wouldn’t allow me to email him extra information — he wanted it all brought or said to shown to him in-person. It’s strange to me that I would take that so badly but it feels like he just doesn’t get it. (It = me, I guess)

Crab

Crab burying itself in the sand

I will soon be out of town. There is so much I need to take care of before I go, but I don’t have a consolidated list yet. I haven’t been able to remember everything in one sitting and don’t really know where all of my notes have gone off to. Hopefully I can get everything remembered and done before I leave.

So for the rest of today? My partner’s parents are both here and we’re about to eat pizza. I suppose the only chance I have of getting homework done today will be to do some after dinner. We got up very late today (because we got home from “Joe’s” b-day party very late last night). Then we made plum coffee cakes (his dad has his own plum tree), finished watching a TV show episode, and then went on a walk. The walk was my doing. We ended up completing a Pok√©monGO raid and taking over a gym. I hope that it will be easy for me to excuse myself after dinner, and focus well on studying for a few hours!

Therapy isn’t going well at present

So just recently, my therapist (actually a psychologist) asked me about dissociation. This was in the context of me having had a bad weekend that I shared with him, and there was a moment where I dissociated, and thus told him about that.

He asked about dissociation so I told him using the easiest method I have. I mentioned some elementary school abuse story. Okay, I should have thought that through farther or something. But I didn’t and here I am. That was last week, I think. I don’t know. You guys would know better than me because I got into a not-quite-okay mode and posted here a lot. I even sketched a comic! I saw him twice that week because there was too much to possibly say because it lead into other things, like a time period I haven’t written about here although have alluded to several times.

Meanwhile, this psychologist stops me and says if I say any more about elementary school, he’s going to have to report it. But days later, he’s able to check with his ethics officer and for reasons I won’t share here, he doesn’t have to. If he had done so, it would have been the end of the world. I can’t share why on here. But without even the strength to put the true emotion into these words, MY world would have ended and so would several others’.

So then I feel safer again, and I share some things to him via email. Not too much, for me, but I hadn’t ever shared w/him outside of the office before, so it probably seemed like a lot.

Now to my point. Today, we had an appointment. I was so ill-feeling this morning (nerves because I didn’t know what to expect), I ended up taking anti-anxiety medicine earlier in the day. So, granted I was still on some amount of medicine by the time our appointment came around (it’s half-life is fairly short so it wasn’t a full dose). So it’s possible the medicine was interfering with any sort of ability of me to feel connected.

But it was weird. Kind of like nothing had ever come up? Well, but he did ask if I wanted to talk about anything? I don’t know. I don’t really know what happened. The whole appointment went by and I left and I’m wondering if it was productive in any way whatsoever. I can’t be wasting money like that. He did say that next appointment, I could talk about whatever I’d like. I asked if it would be helpful or harmful to talk about that shit. He thought perhaps it would be helpful.

So in that case — is that I checked with him several times to see if I could have permission via email to share things with him during this time. For example, any sketches or poems, that sometimes help me to try and explain something I can’t vocalize. He said that was fine to bring to him in-person, but he doesn’t want it being sent to him in other ways. He wants everything to be face-to-face. He gave more reasons for why face-to-face is superior but I don’t recall because I was busy talking to myself internally (well, it’s true. I was talking to myself mentally about how important it was for me to be able to share during the week, since I historically chicken-out the day of appointments and know I wouldn’t bring in anything). I did say that out loud — that I would probably be too shy to bring any in. I think I said it out loud, anyway. It’s all kind of a blur.

Anyway. This is all very unsettling for me because next week is my last week around before I’m gone for a while. Then he’s going to be gone for a while. So basically, why go to next week’s appointment? I should cancel that appointment. But maybe I only say that out of bitterness. Maybe it could be productive in some other way?

But I feel like he just doesn’t get it. The can of worms is already cracked open. Maybe he’s trying to put a lid on it. Maybe I’m trying to open it all the way, but that’s a long, long road to go back down.

There IS a desire in me to open the can of worms. I feel like, there is a piece of my life that I still haven’t threaded together into a cohesive narrative. I feel like I’m more ready now than I ever have been before, and I like to know what’s happened in my life and why and how I grew because of it. I ain’t talking about elementary school; that is black and white, easy to understand.

That part of me, that wants to open the can of worms, is really disappointed in this appointment. I know now that I had wanted an excuse for a muse. I had wanted him to inquire and be curious and try to learn more. I had wanted a reason to get out pencil and paper and sketch and revisit papers on that time period and thread together a cohesive understanding. But it’s a dangerous, time-consuming process and, knowing myself, I would need extra support in the meanwhile. I WOULD become clingy and desperate at times; I WOULD probably ask to come in twice a week instead of once at times. I might be weird as I dig through some dirt. But I feel like, in less than a month’s time, I’d have the understanding I so desire.

The one perk of waiting is that the VAST MAJORITY of my writings and drawings on this topic and FROM this time period and directly after are at my parents’ house. Perhaps I could gather those documents within the next year and have them ready. Perhaps I could go to an actual trauma specialist this time and do this once and for all.

That’s all well and good, but with this can of worms cracked, it’s difficult to turn my mind to other things, like homework. I made myself exercise A LOT this weekend, yesterday, and today. I think it helped prevent me from nose-diving straight into a terrible depression. Instead, I just feel kind of … unsupported and scared and like, I must have made a terrible mistake. Embarrassed, I guess. But that latter part is likely because I perceived no feedback from psychologist today. BUT, as I’ve already said, that is either because I was on anti-anxiety medicine and perhaps numbed my ability to sense connection, or perhaps he was staying withdrawn on purpose because my emails and sharing of that sketch scared the shit out of him and he took it literally like I was already clung to his leg or something. He didn’t make any comment about that sketch, btw. That probably made me very sad since I drew that to share with him something I experience.

Ah well, you know? Maybe he doesn’t know what the hell he’s doing. I always assume these psych people know what the hell they’re doing but what if they don’t. Or what if he does, and it was my exact contact during the week that caused today’s appointment to be non-existent…or the anti-anxiety drugs.. LOOP! ūüôā

Comic: Not this process again (Comic#050)

Reverting from adult to child

Reversion

Hmm. I can’t figure out how to make this image click-able so you can see it blown up to full size (older pics of mine are still click-able). Perhaps it’s the theme I’m using. Maybe I’ll try switching to a different theme.
*UPDATE*: I fixed it! I had already tried two new themes before discovering what was different about this one compared with older ones that worked as links. I’m staying with a new, more open-feeling theme anyway.

Poem: Not understood

I WISH I HAD WORDS

I’D DESCRIBE THE FEAR
                               EMPTINESS

BUT YOU WEREN’T THERE

    your words
         your words

you’ll never understand

in this, i am alone
with no proof now
my palms are empty
not one grain of sand left to fall

just a memory
         and vocal cords that can speak and sing
         and fingers with which to type
         and a hand with which to draw

it would take a great deal of time and tearing open of old scars
to explain this to you

— innerdragon

Log: Jul 29 – Aug 4 (Wed – Tue): Lowered thyroid and mood

Jul 29¬†(Wed):¬†Work; Stayed overnight at my uncle’s, alone
Jul 30 (Thu): Work; Bicycled on bridge while my brother jogged
Jul 31 (Fri): Work;
Aug 01 (Sat): RIVER RAFTING
Aug¬†02¬†(Sun):¬†Dinner w/ Peter’s folks
Aug 03 (Mon): Work;
Aug 04 (Tue): NO THERAPY; Work 8a Р4p; Psychiatrist 5:30p

Wednesday: Work. Went to my aunt and uncle’s house. She was out of town, but my uncle and cousin were there. Peter joined us for dinner and then he left after we watched part of a silly movie, and I stayed and thought I’d sleep better, but slept poorly anyway.

Thursday's Sunset

Thursday’s Sunset

Thursday: Work, but there was little to do, so I ended up watching Stephen Fry videos, inspired by BlahPolar’s blog. They were wonderful but I ended up on the topic of HIV and other things that made me feel quite ill after 4 straight hours on the topic. I felt so yuck at the end of the day, I started to try and contact people. I ended up in contact with my brother. He was actually in the area and about to go jogging on a bridge, so I joined him with my bicycle! It was sooooo beautiful. I felt so much better after that. Even though he thinks my upcoming plans still place me as a mooch / using/abusing the system around me. But I think we got along fine and we then had dinner together and it was really good.

Friday: The morning was strange in that Peter had to leave quickly and I was still getting ready for work. I floated around, doing random, unnecessary things, like deciding now would be a good time to mop part of the bathroom floor. I was still in the process of making myself breakfast when he showed back up — I didn’t know he was coming back after that appointment. But I’ll confess that was infinitely more helpful for me. Especially since I was considering practicing piano briefly after breakfast… Who knows when I’d have actually left for work on my own. Then we left together.

ADDITIONAL, IMPORTANT NOTE: I forgot to take my Lexapro + Thyroid medicine until around 4 pm. That is when¬†I started to feel some odd withdrawal-type symptoms — which¬†is what alerted me to the fact that¬†I¬†hadn’t taken¬†my medicine.

Keyboard Failure

Error message from a couple of days ago

It was this night that I have an odd email to my psychiatrist. After work, I think things felt fine. Peter and I made a dinner for ourselves. We were finishing up when his roommate and a mutual friend of theirs came over, and we all chatted. I was interested and engaged verbally with them when the topic of autism and programmers came up. I learned a different perspective. Then I was clearing up dishes and such and no longer having anything to say, but was sort of listening and wanting them to all keep having a nice time, when Peter’s roommate offered out some whiskey for himself and the friend. It was not offered to me or to Peter. Peter eventually asked if he could have some. I didn’t get up this bravery. (Mind you, I HATE whiskey and would have refused the offer anyway). But I felt so intensely jealous and left out. I went quite insane. My emotions literally took me to what I consider a bit of insanity. I couldn’t get past it. These emotions were building and I knew they have a cabinet where, if I had wanted some alcohol for myself, I could have surely asked and found something I would find palatable, and could have joined them and no longer felt left out. But I didn’t. I finished up the cleanup and then I think I went to my bedroom and sat and thought. It was already very late and dark outside, but I had the option of going outside, just down the street, and bringing myself back a wine cooler or something. Or I could go into a nearby bar and ask for a mixed drink. Or I could cut myself. That was a very, very strong urge. I could go into the kitchen, get a sharp knife that is likely not sterilized, and cut myself, and then have a bandage and another scar to deal with at some future point when I’m no longer feeling this burning and intensity inside.

I looked up how to go to bars alone as a female at night and stay safe. I read some tips online but none seemed that helpful. I was debating how to safely carry my wallet when Peter came to the room. I don’t know what I said to him but he asked if I wanted to go on a walk and I said yes, I was about to go on a walk. He asked if I wanted his company and I can’t recall my response; I was torn because I didn’t want him to leave his friend. I didn’t know that the friend and roommate were out on the deck partaking in marijuana anyway (or that probably would have sent me COMPLETELY over the edge with jealousy/ feeling left out).

But I agreed to his company and I hope I got across that I appreciated it. We walked. My fancy pedometer¬†says I was walking very intensely for 2 hours. It took a while before I would talk about why I was so upset. I felt it was so STUPID and silly, I just wanted to walk off the feelings first and then later be able to talk about it in a detached way. But yeah, I finally talked about it, and I think I’m glad I did. He didn’t think feeling left out was a stupid/silly response.¬†(He also pointed out that he and I are implicitly invited to join, but I’m not sure I could make that assumption). But I insisted my response was incredibly out of proportion to the scenario / fairly insane. I was INCREDIBLY upset for very little reason.¬†(I’m a little concerned that Peter will be wary of people drinking around me in the future, since I reacted to this so strongly. But time will tell.)

We walked so hard that I had to stop at one point. I had been going even with a side stitch, but at the top of one hill, I got too light-headed to continue and ended up laying down on someone’s front steps.

Even when we got back, I was still upset. So I took 1 mg of clonazepam, and an unknown time later emailed my psychiatrist about it. I’m very concerned that the lowered thyroid dose has increased my mood instability. I have definitely felt more melancholy lately, but again, how can I know what is thyroid, versus my usual response to HUGE upcoming life changes?? I am very close to no longer being an employee for the first time since 2002. Even sometime in 2002, I got a part-time job. And I will be a full-time student for the first time since 2003!!! And that’s not to mention that Peter and I are going to buy me a wardrobe and us a bigger bed any day now, which will mark the time I’ll officially move in with him and begin to help pay rent/utilities and whatnot, and will also qualify for his health insurance as an opposite-sex non-married domestic partner (his work has that option). It is scary. But my own premiums went up $60 last month, making them now cost $785.66/month, I kid you not!!!!! But his insurance is much worse for prescription drugs. Instead of a set copay, it’s a percentage of the overall drug cost, which is very bad news if I ever have to take a drug that is costly. My thyroid and iron are very cheap, so that’s fine there, but I’ll have to shop around for the cheapest escitalopram (generic Lexapro). When that first went generic, it was still very expensive. But it’s been a good ‘nother year or two now, so hopefully the cost has gotten lower.

Anyway, I was eventually able to sleep.

River rafting!

River rafting!

Saturday: OMFG!!!! River rafting with Peter and two of my cousins and¬†their dog, I kid you not!!!!!!!!!!!! It was SO FUN. OMG. (One of them is my cousin legally, the other is her fiance, but I count him as my cousin already.) So at the start, one of my cousins was running the car down and then bicycling back to our start position. My other cousin was walking around in the water and getting her dog used to the river (it was his first introduction to water / swimming). Meanwhile, Peter and I got used to the water temperature (it took me a while — I’m a huge chicken for feeling cold). Once in, we swam upshore a little way and watched some kids who were swinging off a tree and dropping off of a rope into the river. I decided to do it! CRAZY. Even though the water level was way down and so the dropping area was quite shallow, I decided to do it, because it’s something I’ve never done before and always thought I’d be too afraid to ever try. It’s good that the kids yelled at me when it was time to let go of the rope, because I’m afraid I would have kept holding on otherwise. It was fun! I touched bottom but I didn’t get hurt. It turned out to be sandy there, not rocky like the rest of the riverbed.

Anyway, there was very little current and so two of us were out of the “raft” at all times, pulling and/or “paddling” it down the river. We didn’t have paddles, but when the bottom was too deep for walking, we used our arms and legs to keep it moving. What a day. I feel terrible because Peter got terribly sunburned, even though we had slathered on sunscreen at the start. Apparently we went too long before re-applying it. Afterward, we all ate out together.

Sunday:¬†I forgot to mention that while all this is going on, my parents and my dog have been out camping!!! I’ve been getting pictures of my dog snoozing with them in a tent. ūüôā It’s so sweet.

Gluten-free-dairy-free-vegan-cheeseburger - image of a slice of lettuce and a slice of tomato on an otherwise empty skillet

Gluten-free-dairy-free-vegan-cheeseburger Meme

I have no records regarding what I did on Sunday. If I remember right, the day started very slowly and I had a killer time getting out of bed, yet again. At some point, we walked and I looked in a shop, and then we ate fries somewhere as a lunch-snack, because we were scheduled to eat with Peter’s folks for dinner (they were generously sharing a $100 coupon with us, from his dad’s work). We ate dinner with them and it was really good. We went to an Indian restaurant because they were trying so hard to make sure I’d have something to eat! My eating is a pain in the @$$, let me tell you. I’m going to try going back onto barley in the next couple of months.

PTA: Gluten-free, lactose-intolerant¬†pescatarian. That’s what I am right now. PTA.

Monday: Work. Slow at first and I was able to post pictures of the rafting trip for my cousins. Then it got super busy and I had to stay a couple of hours late, but that was fine. Peter was late too, so we met around 8 pm and ate out. Then we got ready for bed. I tried to sleep in the bed, even if it meant I wouldn’t sleep well, but it actually turned out his very bad sun burn was causing him to be super ticklish and my hair kept bumping it, so I decided to sleep on the floor anyway. And I was able to fall asleep at some point, so I’m glad I moved down there. I’m too alert/aware to fall asleep, otherwise. I’m so anxious about having to flop around and wake the other person, I can’t relax enough to fall asleep.

Tuesday: Work. It’s slow so far, as you can see. Later, I have an appointment with my psychiatrist.

Mood Ranking for all of these various days: 2 (Friday, such strong self-injury feelings count as a 2; in my book, there’s only one step lower) – 5 (Bicycling on the bridge with my brother; River rafting w/Peter and my cousins)

Update

Flowers

Verbena Flowers

I just have a few things to share. Today was better. I’m going to finish this post and then vacuum, if nobody comes home first. I’m alone right now and it’s nice. No pressure. No eggshells.

I think my mom figured it out, though. She knows her brother pretty well and she has helped me to understand other people’s motivations a lot over the years. She thought about it all night (actually, she had insomnia last night because this was on her mind; I may have expressed my frustrations to her yesterday). She thinks a big chunk of why my uncle has amped up his vocalizing of his disapproval and his side comments toward me is because of my tardiness to work. He probably feels like he can’t fire me, but since January 1 of this year, I have been very bad at showing up to work at any decent hour. So obviously, with any other employee, he’d want to fire their asses. But he probably feels like he can’t fire me, so instead his frustration and disapproval is coming out at me in other ways, in personal life.

I don’t plan to be tardy now that we’re at the new location. I was freaking out since back then because of the impending move, but the move has happened now (P.S. “Joe” did nearly all of the packing. I did the two cabinets of office and shipping supplies, since that’s like my little “happy place” of office life, but basically nothing else. Even when it came time to pack up my own desk I just froze and didn’t do it). I have been showing up at the same time as my uncle since we moved, except for today, when I had therapy in the morning and then waited a little extra time so I could meet “Joe” at the train station and walk with him the rest of the way to work. (My uncle never went to the office before, but will be doing so now that it is in this new location.) (P.P.P.P.S. Today was “Joe’s” last day of helping out at the office.)

I do not plan to be late, but I know myself and some of my negative qualities. If I feel like I’m being micro-scoped about what time I leave the house, I’m going to get later and later because I’ll be afraid of showing my face / opposed to showing my face.

So what I need to do is take this into my own hands and basically leave the house without being noticed and show up like it’s just any other job, not an analyzed “thing”. You know what I mean? If it’s a big “thing”, I’m going to end up avoiding it like the plague. If it’s ignored, it won’t be a big deal to me either.

In therapy, we decided that I need to move out, because I *am* dependent on my aunt and uncle right now, and so I will be treated as a dependent.

If I moved out, I could even stay at that job, hypothetically. If I went back to full time work, I could even switch to their benefits. But then I’d have to switch doctors, therapist, psychiatrist. But I just don’t know.

I got excited at the thought of finding other people to rent a room from, if I can find someone who would allow me to get a DOG. Can you imagine? I know, I said I had to sell my pony before I let myself get a dog. But can you just imagine it? Me and a hypoallergenic dog? What if I found a place near an animal rescue site? What if I could work and live near animal rescue? What if I could work AT an animal rescue place? Ah dreams!!!

I know I’m in a pretty good mental state right now because I’m able to think of being alive for the next several months. That’s so much better than when I first arrived here and could only project ahead a few days tops. Now that I’ve pictured getting a dog and living independently, I don’t know if I can shove that back down. Imagine me having my very own refrigerator??? I don’t cook but I can put together sandwich ingredients. I can keep carrots and hummus in stock. Etc. I think I’d survive all right food-wise now (I didn’t feel I could do that when I first arrived, either).

So I know that being here has been very healthy for me. But now that I’m feeling so much better, I feel that itch for independence and adulthood again…

This time, I’ll get it right.

And OMG I want my own dog again. I miss my baby. I want to get the same breed as him because he was so much the perfect match for me. But my previous therapist was quite certain that I should get a wheaton terrier, because they are apparently the top-rated service animal for people on the autistic spectrum. Apparently, they are hypoallergenic, large enough to not be fragile (my favorite breed is very fragile), and are supposed to have a very good temperament. She said they are much more level-headed and calm than any of the -doodles (labradoodles, goldendoodles, etc), making them very good for people on the spectrum.

My baby couldn’t be a service dog because he is just as sensitive to loud sounds and sudden movements as me, and is also fragile enough that I have to worry for his safety each time we pass by another dog.

BUT I like a little dog. First, their poops are much easier to address. Second, I figure that if I am ever out on a mountain with my small dog and he were to get hurt, I could easily carry him back. Third, I’ve always wanted a lap dog. Fourth, I could easily crate a small dog for travel. (In fact, here, I would only be able to take a small dog with me in a crate on the train, unless a big dog was certified as a service animal.) [[ADDITION: Fifth, they eat less.]]

But, why would I get a dog if not for being certified as a service animal? So I don’t need to be concerned about that part — the travel part. Whatever dog I were to get would be a service animal.

Then there is another catch, which is that I do not want to support a breeder (except for the woman who bred my beloved dog. I know her and she’s not a mass breeder and not in it for the profit. But on principle, I don’t really want to support a breeder). I want to support rescue animals. But because of my allergies, I am rather stuck with pure-breed animals. I would have to find rescue groups for either of the two dog breeds I decide between, both of which, I think, are a bit more rare than a lot of other breeds. There are plenty on PetFinder, though. So it’s possible. | Okay, I am looking at all the dogs on PetFinder, now [i.e., I’m “in my happy place” and will be there a while] (although I must rehome my pony first anyway, which will be killer hard emotionally). ‘Later everyone.