A Long Distance Relationship

As you know, I’ve been dating J for about two and a half years now and while he technically lives in Portland, he’s really not here that much. He travels all over the world a lot of the time (sometimes I meet up with him) and then he occasionally comes back to Portland for a few weeks. This has been kind of frustrating for me, but I decided to look at the situation in a different way and that’s helped a lot. I just consider us in a long distance relationship and now my expectations are so much different! Like most things, it’s all about perspective.

The truth is, I like it when he’s gone. I can do my own thing, make whatever plans I want and not have to even consider including him or working around his schedule. Like a total psycho, I just wanted him to want to be with me all the time, even though I don’t really want that. Ugh, and that’s what therapy’s for. Anyway, relationships are hard, and weird, and different for everyone.

In the meantime, J and I stay connected through the magical world of the internet! I took a screen shot of us during one of our recent conversations:

It really doesn’t get any sexier than that! Filters are so amazing and hilarious these days.

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Some Fun Stuff

First, thank you so much for all your comments and texts about my last post. It really means the world to me. I still miss Biff so much, but it’s getting easier. I guess I just didn’t realize how close we were or how much he was a part of my life until he was gone. And that’s been hard. Anyway, thank you. And thanks so much to a couple of my best human friends who donated to Best Friends Animal Society on my behalf. It’s comforting to know that some animals will be helped as a result of this.

Ok, so on to the fun stuff! A couple of weeks ago, I volunteered to help Kennedy’s class during her Chinese New Year performance. Kennedy goes to a Chinese charter school and every year they have a performance (and yes, Kennedy is learning Mandarin…she’s about a million times smarter than the rest of us). The parents are supposed to volunteer a certain amount of hours each year. Because my sister (Kennedy’s mom) is legally blind there are a lot of volunteer things she can’t participate in so I try to volunteer whenever I can. I attended the performance last year so I kind of knew what was going on. One of the volunteer options this year was as a “class usher.” When I read the description, I thought it would be more accurate to call it “stage mom.” So, of course, I signed up.

As “stage mom” it was my job to help the teachers get the students from the audience to the stage and then back to the audience after the performance. Easy-peasy, right? Well, not really. Getting a bunch of first graders to even just follow each other was a like figuring out Brexit. Herding cats also comes to mind. And then, to keep them quiet backstage was pretty much impossible. OMFG. But I still managed to get some pictures!

Yes, the teachers gave each kid a fan. Trying to get them not to f*ck around with them backstage was a nightmare. I’m surprised they weren’t all broken before they went out.

But I had a great view of the performance!

Overall it was fun and I didn’t lose any kids! #winning

The second fun thing going on is that I decided to try out masters synchronized swimming! I think I mentioned before that I was a synchronized swimmer as a kid (from 8 to 13) and that I loved it. I’ve gotten back into swimming in the last few years, but I’ve gotten a bit bored. Not surprisingly, swimming 66 lengths (1 mile) a few times a week can become a bit monotonous. Over the summer, I contacted the team at my gym and I got some of the details about the program. And last week, I went to two practices! I was so nervous and scared and excited. The good news…I’m a good swimmer, I can tread water for 90 minutes, and I still know some synchronized swimming! Everyone on the team is so nice and they were thrilled (or appeared to be) that I wanted to join. I’ll let you know when we’re going to the Olympics. Oh and I’ll post some pictures if/when I’m brave enough to take them!

Posted in Family, Sports | 2 Comments

My Very Best Friend

I can’t believe I’m writing this post, but I’ve overshared my life so many times already that I can’t leave this one out. With a very heavy and broken heart, I’m so sad to tell you that I had Biff euthanized last week. It was one of the most difficult and horrible decisions I’ve had to make in my life. As weird as it sounds, we were in love. Like madly in love. Biff was probably more of the “madly” part of that equation, but yes, still in love.

He was my little shadow and if I was home, he was with me. He’d take a break from me if someone else was eating, but 99% of the time, he was with me. And I work from home so we were together almost 24/7.

He was the most loving and cuddly dog I’ve ever met.

And he just wanted to be near me all the time. But he was also 70 pounds of pure muscle. I knew right away that we would both need training if I had any chance of controlling him. He went to a Reactive Rover class at the Humane Society, he spent 40 days at a board and train facility, and then most recently I started having him wear a muzzle when we went on walks. He loved getting ready for a walk:

And all of that training worked! Except that he started becoming unpredictably aggressive toward people when I was around. Biff became aggressive toward the mailman twice (once at our house and once away from our house when we were on a walk) and got too close while running and barking and scraped the mailman with his mouth (not a bite, but close enough). Recently, and for no reason whatsoever, he starting “turning on” someone in my home (someone he’s known since I first rescued him), not biting her, but running, jumping and barking at her in an extremely aggressive manner. We started changing our behavior and Biff would still react. I even saw two psychics about his behavior.

I became increasingly nervous about his behavior, we stopped having people over to the house, and if anyone came by, we’d have to have him in a muzzle. Once he started displaying aggressive behavior toward the person in my home, I contacted the shelter (a no-kill shelter that specializes in pit bull rescues) and they agreed that after everything I’d done for Biff, euthanizing was the best option. Honestly, I was relieved. As much as I love him, I wouldn’t be able to live with myself if he hurt someone. And I couldn’t stand the idea of leaving him at the shelter, worrying about him with a new family, or how he’d feel after I’d “abandoned” him. After talking to the shelter, I also called his vet. I explained the situation and all I had done for him, and the vet also agreed. I made an appointment for a few days out so that we could all spend some good quality time with him.

In his last days, we gave him all the love and affection, chicken and rice, treats, and long walks we could. He really lived his very best life!

I thought that euthanizing him would be the most difficult part, but, as it turns out, the aftermath has been so much more difficult than I ever could have imagined. He was only four years old and my very best friend. I miss him more than any other dog I’ve ever had and I was nowhere near ready to say goodbye.

I have already ordered a photo book with about trillion pictures of him. It’s going to take a while for me to recover from losing him, and I’m afraid that there will always be a hole in my heart from this guy.

Posted in Creatures | 14 Comments