Thursday, October 14, 2010


It has been a little while since I last blogged, and there has been a ton of stuff happening.  A few weeks ago I made a trip to Alderson to pick up CHANCE and DRAKE to take them down to Ft. Stewart.  It was quite the adventure because no one told me that DRAKE has a huge fear of men.  When they brought DRAKE out to my car, he got as far away from me as possible, wouldn't even take food from me.  It didn't take long for him to warm up to me, and about an hour into the trip he was resting his head on my shoulder.  CHANCE has a leak in his mouth and about flooded us with all of his drool.  Aside from the little puking incident in the back seat it was a fairly easy and uneventful trip.  SSG Tully spend quite a bit of time with DRAKE when we got him down to Ft. Stewart, and when I was down there last week, DRAKE had adjusted quite well.

Last week was the busiest week I have had since I was out-processing from the Army.  Everything went as well as can be expected I suppose.  I spent my time at Ft. Stewart, the day I was supposed to go to Jesup I had a migraine the night before, and no one could get me up in the morning.  I must have had 15 missed calls from my parents.  I woke up on time, but never got out of bed and ended up falling back asleep.  I also had an incident where I was running a bit late for some training, and was not able to stay awake while driving.  CAROLINE did very well.  I took her to downtown Hinesville to walk around for a little bit while waiting to meet everyone for lunch.  She did get pretty distracted when she saw a couple of cats, so that may be something I need to expose her to.  I also made another trip to the commissary, and actually made it into the store, and was able to maintain and not fall apart like I did last time.  There was a reporter from Men's Health Magazine, and we all had dinner with him one night, and I was able to tell him some of my story, specifically what changes I have made in my life since starting work with paws4vets.  I hope that when the article runs (August 2011) the exposure helps out.

Terry and I had another talk about how things have been going.  I guess I am not showing that I have any emotional bond with CAROLINE.  I expressed my frustration to him telling him that it just seems that no matter what I do it just doesn't seem to be quite enough.  He asked questions like, "If CAROLINE died tomorrow, would you be more upset that you are not getting CAROLINE or not getting a dog?"  "Who are you closest to emotionally?"  "Do you have any friends, and who are they?"  It was a little awkward.  The friends I have are at Ft. Stewart, my recovery meetings, and at the group I attend at the Vet Center.  So between being surrounded by alcoholics and other people with PTSD, there isn't a whole lot of emotions being displayed.  I have been emotionally detached since a very young age, so developing a relationship with anyone or anything is not exactly something that comes naturally to me, and something that I am not going to express even if I do feel some sort of connection.  So, while it may not appear that I am connecting with CAROLINE on the surface, I really think that I have made a huge effort in letting my guard down with her.  Some don't agree. 

This past weekend we had the Rugby Tournament Fundraiser.  Friday night we had some folks over to the house for burgers.  I was able to meet Ryan and SADIE for the first time.  It is nice to be able to get to know some of the others people who have been with paws4vets for a little while.  It was the first time I had CAROLINE off a leash, and just let her romp around the backyard.  She had been cooped up in the car all day, and when I let her loose, she took full advantage of it.  She never did get too far away from me, and she would stop and look back to check in and make sure that she was still ok.  I had a very difficult time at the tournament on Saturday.  I ended up having 2 anxiety attacks while I was there, and a third on the way home.  Terry was gonna take CAROLINE back up to WV with him Sunday morning, but I asked if I could take her to my meeting on Sunday, group on Tuesday, and then to my appointment with Kevin on Wednesday.  With a little bit of adjusting people's schedules, he said ok. 

Having CAROLINE alone outside of a training environment was one of the best things that has happened since I met her back in March.  She did pretty well going with me to my appointments.  She got a little spooked at group and would make some little noises and back away from me, so I just let her do her thing and check everyone out.  Eventually she settled down, and everything was pretty normal.  When she was at the house with me, she would divide her time between checking in with my parents and checking in with me.

I made it back up to Charlotte last night, and will be doing some work with Karen today.  Not sure what the game plan is, but  I am looking forward to today.