Thursday, December 20, 2012

The End

Owen is quite skeptical of the snow
Well folks, today is the end.  As of a few hours ago, Owen and I are officially on our own.  We could go anywhere by ourselves and we have nobody to be accountable to.  It's just us.  Darcie is driving back to Seattle tomorrow; the weather is supposed to get really bad Saturday and as much as we both wanted her to be here for one more day, it just isn't smart when Owen and I are completely through with team training.

Tomorrow night, Owen and I will pick my dad up from the airport and then we will go to dinner together; our first restaurant by ourselves.  And then Sunday we take our first flight that starts our whirlwind holiday vacation.

Things with Owen are going really well; I feel like he is already an extension of myself.  It feels natural to be bringing him everywhere with me, and as hesitant as I am to say it, I am already noticing a difference.  I'm hesitant to say this because every other time we thought we had found something that would help, it didn't.  And that let down gets worse every time.  This time though, I am in a better space mentally (if not physically) and I can look at Owen and see him for what he really is.  He isn't a cure.  He helps me to do the things that the Tourette's makes difficult.  And that is the difference.

I am positive we will have setbacks along the way; there will be times where I want to communicate something to him but don't know how.  And times where I am telling him something and he doesn't understand the manner in which I chose to communicate it.  We will both have days where we are tired and don't want to work; and if those days overlap we may just take a mental health day and snuggle at home.

Today felt so easy though; Owen went with me to get my nails done this morning.  Darcie came with us to help us get situated, but she left shortly after.  Then, we went out to lunch with Darcie.  The manager (I think) seemed well-informed, which was nice after yesterday.  She asked me if Owen was a service dog, I said yes, and we ate lunch.  It was a small restaurant with small tables, so it was good to see how to handle Owen in that situation.

Owen and I showed Darcie the two things from yesterday that we needed to re-test and Darcie, Owen, and I hung out for a while.  Eventually though, Darcie headed back to her hotel and Owen and I stayed home.  It's bittersweet in a way; I am so excited to be on my own working with Owen tomorrow, but there was so much buildup to this week happening, that I am sad to see it go.  I can't believe that the end of the year is almost here; by Monday, Owen and I will be in Texas, then back to California, then back to school.

Owen and I shared some cuddles after Darcie left; I finally had my breakdown that I knew was imminent since Darcie and Owen arrived.  It's back to business as usual tomorrow though; I have a chiropractor appointment in the morning that Owen will be going to.  It's the first place we went with Darcie; and it was when she was still stewarding Owen.  This time, I will be by myself and Owen will be in the rooms the whole time with me.  We have some errands to run afterwards - I have to pick up his dehydrated food he eats because we are almost through the stash Darcie gave us and it's back to Hobby Lobby yet again for some last minute craft needs.  Then we'll have some downtime at home before heading to the airport.  I promised Darcie that we would go to the airport early (the one thing we didn't get to in team training was an airport visit) with treats to work with Owen.  My anxiety spikes immediately upon entrance to the airport; I don't even have to be flying.  Because Owen has never been to an airport, tomorrow I will work on making it a positive place to be (with food) so that as we start traveling, he doesn't automatically associate the airport with anxiety.

I'm planning on one last team training post tomorrow, kind of as a summary, and then after a short break from blogging, I'll put up a post with links to all of the blogs and some "best of" photos.

1 comment:

  1. Congratulations! You made it. :))) I know how weird the end can feel. A good feeling but very, very odd. I remember my first day handling Ben alone. You and Owen are going to do awesome. If you need anything let me know!