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This is a good time to answer a few of the questions I was asked before my hiatus.
A few of you have asked if I'd like a dog of my own.
A friend of mine, Mom of the acd6pack, asked:
with the support of your family, would a rescue dog of your own be a possibility? I know you've thought of it in the past and I can't help but wonder if maybe having Gatsby at your home might have made the family see how much fun a dog can be and also that maybe it helped you?I would love a dog of my own. But it's not a possibility right now. I have dysthymia, which is a chronic (long-term) form of depression, as well as multiple anxiety disorders. Because of this I haven't been able to finish my studies or keep a job. What does that have to do with a dog, you ask? Well, they are just examples which show how disruptive my illness is, and which emphasize that when I say I don't get out of bed or feed myself some days, or I forget to water my plants so they die, I mean it. This means that having a dog isn't going to work, no matter how much I love it or how much care and training I give it on my good days.
A dog is not a plant, people like to say. It's hard to ignore a dog. I know. But my guinea pigs were living, breathing, squeaking creatures and I managed to neglect them more than I'd like. I was lucky that Mom swooped in to care for them - Mom did almost all of the daily care for Cocoa for the last few years.
|I need a hooman to hold my foodables for me!|
My family are reasonably supportive and helped me out with Gatsby the couple of weeks she was with us, but as we all know, a dog is a 15+ year commitment. I'm can't make that commitment right now and I can't make it on behalf of my parents, who aren't after a dog. Due to my illness I'm also living at home, which means that it's not really fair to my parents to bring in a dog when they aren't after one. (And, of course, having no income means that I definitely can't go out and make a 15-year financial commitment.)
So, to conclude -- I would love a dog of my own.
I do get sad that it's not on the cards, because having Gatsby confirmed what we suspected -- having a dog around can help a lot. While Gatsby was here, I exercised, I slept well (no sleep meds at all!), and I had someone and something to focus on other than myself. But it caused some difficulties, too (more on that later).
|Gatsby made a good walking buddy|
But I (have to) accept that it's not on the cards right now, just like I (have to) accept not having the life I want right now. I (can only) do what anyone else with chronic illness does -- just put one foot in front of the other.