Tag Archives: Dog

Sad

What do you do when all your coping skills only help a little?

Image view of blue sky from hole in ground

I am in a pit. I know it will pass, but it feels agonizing. My dog and husband try to comfort me, it helps some. I had thoughts of not existing but I have decided against that. I am here to stay, even if I am miserable. I want to quit things that cause me stress. My husband wants me to wait a month to make Important decisions.

I am not sure what I would do with more free time. My therapist moved my appointments further and further out because I was doing well and had trouble coming up with things to talk about. So, he moved me to “as needed”. Now, I need it but I have to wait for a time he can fit me in. I see my third psychiatrist this year next week. My insurance has been denying claims.

If you have any tips on how to ride this out please comment

My Week

Image: Yorkie with words you just won a free pet portrait from I’ll shoot your pets a $250 value!

I was at a Halloween event at Hala’s Paws pet store in Mission Viejo, CA. I entered raffles and won 2 prizes. A Target gift card and a photo shoot of my dog by I’ll Shoot Your Pets located in Temecula, CA. They came over to my house to take pictures bringing a toy and treats to get his attention. Raider was pretty cooperative, but grew restless by the end. He was laying on the couch so the photographer took pictures of him there. The pictures turned out great. I had the choice of a large canvas photo, 3 8×10 prints or a ceramic mug. I have a large picture my niece made with pastel on wood, so I opted for the 8x10s. Here is the link to the photos.

https://galleries.page.link/Q9XLV

I own a small amount of shares from a company I used to work at in the 1990s. I received a package in the mail of documents that they want to buy the shares back. I want to sell. The only thing is I misplaced the certificate and it is over $100 to replace it. Then I can sell and make a small profit. My friend says it does not sound legitimate. The company is definitely buying the stocks back. He just thinks I should be able to do it all electronically. I have never sold stock or tried to replace a certificate. I have the holdings statement. I am going to look through our files this weekend and try to find the certificate.

The hearing aids are in limbo, my primary dr got them authorized but it is not with the right company, so they are working to get that straightened out. I will have them by the end of the year. I just don’t know when. They can’t order without the insurance authorization so for now I am just waiting.

I am going on a walk for NAMI Orange County, CA tomorrow. I am bringing a friend and will see people I know there. I have a fundraiser on Facebook and the Nami walks website. I have met my goal and will add to my collection of T-shirts.

https://www.facebook.com/donate/326881332539007/?fundraiser_source=external_url

https://www.namiwalks.org/participant/359276

The position I applied to transfer to changed from full time to per diem weekends so I withdrew. I will keep my eyes open. Fortunately, I like what I am doing now. When I told my friend I was anxious just deciding if I should apply he said “ don’t suffer twice”. I wish I knew how to turn off precipitatory anxiety. Now, I can relax.

Have a nice weekend!

TikTok @Schizoaffectivedogmom

I made my first TikTok video https://vm.tiktok.com/ZM8DvPD97/ my username is @schizoaffectivedogmom I wrote a blog post early on about coping skills called Coping with Schizoaffective Disorder https://lorib434.wordpress.com/2017/03/20/coping-with-schizoaffective-disorder/ so I am starting with a series on coping skills. The first one is my dog because he is the best. He is cute and funny and likes walks and being pet.

Image: dog on bed

I will keep blogging. The reason I was drawn to TikTok is that I went to an online NAMI CA conference and someone recommended a few users on TikTok. I liked what I saw and would like to add to that. I am older and not very technologically adept so we shall see how long I last. I did make some periscope videos when those were a thing, but few people came.

I am doing well. I just took my dog, Raider, to a Halloween event at a pet store. They had treats for dogs and people, lots of dogs dressed up, raffles, an artist, a dog rescue with the cutest puppies. Raider gets nervous but he seemed to have a good time meeting the other dogs. I just put a bandana on him. I entered the raffles. One prize is a portrait of your dog which would be awesome. We have one that my niece made that I love.

My health insurance, including behavioral health, changes Jan 1. My psychiatrist takes the new insurance. My therapist doesn’t but can apply for continuation of care and if it is approved the new insurance will cover her. Otherwise, I found someone highly recommended who takes the new insurance but retires in 2023. I was really anxious at first but now I am calm since it should work out.

ETA: hey I won the pet portrait from I’llShoot Your Pets (gotta love the name). So excited! and a Target gift card.

In Sickness and In Health

Image dog on bed

I have had sinus congestion and headaches off and on for a couple of weeks.  It is finally starting to clear up.  I swear I have a barometer in my head and get headaches when it is about to rain.  We had a storm with thunder and lightening and then my head started to clear.

 

My husband and I went to San Diego for a couple of days to celebrate 25 years of marriage.  Mental health issues can be hard on relationships and I am glad we have been able to get through all of these years.  My daughter stayed home with the dog.  I don’t think she missed us but the dog did. We mostly relaxed and ate.  Everything was walking distance from where we stayed.

 

The first night we went to a restaurant, Rockin’ Baja Lobster.  We were there at happy hour.  I went way off my keto diet  and even had a few drinks.  The next day we had lunch at a Brazilian steakhouse, Fogo de Chao.  It was fancy but we just had the salad bar. It was pretty filling.  That night we went to a dueling piano bar, The Shout House.  That was a lot of fun.  They called people up on stage which would have embarrassed me.

 

Now we are home and getting back into our routine.  My mother in law is taking us out tonight and then I go back on keto.  I plan on going alcohol free until April.  I belong to some Facebook groups for moderate alcohol drinking.  I asked about any live groups and was told about one over zoom.  I went, but when I told them I drink twice a year the host was surprised and I felt like I did not belong.  My issue was, I am not sure if I want to expand on that, but I think I figured out what I want to do on my own.  I am keeping alcohol out of the house, but if we go to an event where I am not driving I am giving myself the option to drink.  With Covid there have not been many social occasions.

 

I have health insurance through my husband’s work.  They decided to change insurance companies coming in January.  Our PCPs are in network but behavioral health is different.  As far as psychiatrists, I have been on the same regimen for years so I mainly just need someone to refill my prescriptions.  But, I have so much trouble finding a therapist I click with.  I like the one I have now, but she does not take the new insurance.  I have been searching but I don’t know how to look.  I found one therapist who is great, but is retiring in 2023.  I am not sure if I want to start all over then.

 

 

 

 

D is for Dog

Raider, my walking antidepressant helps keep me sane.  He needs walks so I have to get out. He is someone to come home to until the rest of my family gets here. He follows me around, wants to be in the same room as me. He is cuddly and cute.

He has his own issues and anxiety. I am doing “mat work” so he has a place to go to and calm down and it is portable.  I have to point for him to remember where to go. We will get there. He is doing good with loose leash walking and “look at me”.  I don’t mind if he walks in front, but his trainer said pulling increases his cortisol, so I am getting him not to pull, mostly. And, his big issue is he growls when he has a special treat if you get near him. We are working on drop it and eventually leave it. He is doing awesome with that.

 

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The results are in

Raider ball

I had Raider’s DNA tested through @embarkvet .  He is:

32.5% Poodle (Small)
14.9% Cocker Spaniel
11.8% German Shepherd Dog
9.2% Chow Chow
6.0% Pekingese
25.6% Supermutt *
*What’s in that Supermutt? There may be small amounts of DNA from these distant ancestors:

You can see more here: EMBK.ME/RAIDER2

(I was told he was shih tzu X poodle by his previous owner)

His estimated weight is 33 lbs though and he is full grown and about 20. I don’t know how accurate that result usually is.

 

I am very pleased with the results. He is also clear of 165 genetic conditions.

I discovered he has a trait for low ALT (a liver enzyme they use to test liver function). It is not harmful, but it is useful to know so they can interpret his test results properly.

DNA testing

imageI have been interested in the different DNA tests available, like ancestry or 23andMe. (I am not endorsing any products).

At one time, I worked at a company that did DNA work.  I even met Francis Collins, one of the leaders of the human genome project, who was a consultant.

I was interested, but I was not sure if I wanted to have my dna results out there. What if they were used against me? That is not paranoia. Right now, there are laws against that. But, I think it is a legitimate fear.

Then I heard of Promethease. One of a number of websites that will analyze the raw data and compare it to scientific studies, mainly health related. I decided to give it a shot.

I ordered a kit from Ancestry.  I was not very interested in the heritage data, but I wanted the raw data results. You can get raw data from other dna kits, too. I have dry mouth from my medications, so it was not easy collecting the small saliva sample. Then I had to wait. It takes about 6 weeks. I found a distant relative, but for the most part the results were not too exciting.

Next, I downloaded the raw data from Ancestry and following the instructions, uploaded it on Promethease. It did not take long and I had MANY results.  They tell you what you are a risk for developing. It knew my eye color, diabetes, obesity ( I have what is called the fat gene). I have a number of genes associated with schizophrenia and one for bipolar and depression. It told me I am a risk for macular degeneration and breast cancer. I am sensitive to NSAIDS and caffeine. There are results about how you metabolize different medications.

23andMe has a health panel which gives similar results, but the Promethease analysis was free in Dec and is not expensive. I think it is regularly $10.

There are so many results, it is hard for me to read it all.

 

I was pleased enough with the results, I am having my dog dna tested, now. You can’t do anything with the raw data, but they give breed and health info.  You can share the results with your vet, too. (I don’t think my dr would want to look at my results). I am in the process of waiting until March.

 

 

 

 

 

I have a dog

Raider

I have been lookng for a dog that matches with my family and I finally found one.  He is a poodle/shih tzu mix. His previous owner was moving to an apartment that does not accept dogs.

He has made himself at home and seems to be adjusting well.

It will be good for me to have to get up to walk him. And he is comforting

My children are teenagers and excited that he is here.

I am excited to go shopping for him  tomorrow. We have food and some suppies already.
I found a website with a forum on dogs called http://www.dogforum.com