As someone who has typically had cats all her life, life with a dog is a whole new experience. For one, I have been learning that you need to establish for yourself what your personal boundaries are with the dog and what your expectations are of your relationship. I spoke about this in one of my other blog posts, but I find it especially important to say again. This is because when integrating your long term love affair with your favorite cat, with your new relationship with your puppy, it can go down hill every quickly if you are not setting the ground rules right from the start.
I recently discovered that I, as the human being who is housing them, feeding them, giving them love and essentially, one hundred percent in charge of their entire lives, needs to remember that I am to be taken care of first. Again, otherwise things go downhill very quickly. Not only in my relationship with them, but in my health and personal well being. This is true of my other relationships as well. Because I am also a mother and a wife who, although doesn’t have a formal “job” that brings in an income (I do have a passion for empowering others through education and mentoring), I am running the entire household as well as every relationship within that home. I am constantly wearing a multitude of hats and juggling at all times-despite the brain injury's effects on me. But I am a teacher at heart and that is something that I have come to learn about myself. So the first lesson I teach (and apply for myself) is understanding boundaries and establishing respect. Without these in any relationship it's easy for chaos, finger pointing, anger and miscommunication to take a rapid turn south, dragging the relationship along with it.
Like I've said before, it all starts with me. I need to understand what boundaries I am establishing with the dog, and the cat, as well as my family, friends and from others in general. Being clear on what I am looking for in my relationships. And yes, this includes my healthcare team as well. As I’ve said before, in anther blog post, my healthcare team works for me. I hired them. I am paying them for a service and if I don't like the service I am getting, there are plenty of them out there to choose from. So why settle for someone who disrespects me or treats me like I’m just another dollar sign closer to paying off their car? I wouldn’t accept that from my dog, my husband, my child or anyone else in my family. Because I have learned to respect myself and establish boundaries. This is where self-advocacy begins. This is where being your own best friend comes in handy.
So now I ask you, what is your relationship like with yourself?
I am still learning who I am after the injury. There are glimmers of a person I once knew, but essentially that person is no longer here. There is someone here that I am befriending and getting to know better. Someone that will take some time to learn more about. Which is why I am starting with understanding what is important to her, what is it that is most valuable and essential to her heart? This is where the boundaries begin. This is where I better understand how she wants to be treated and start to respect that with each and every thought, spoke word and action I take. Just like my relationship with Phineas is a whole new world, so too is this relationship with this person I am now. It will take some time to let the rots take place, but I can feel them start to grow each and every day. Becoming firmer and more solid with each choice of Mindful Self-C.A.R.E along the way.
Information contained within this site does not take the place of professional medical care. It is for educational purposes only and created with the intention of offering support and empowerment to women struggling to find wholistic and natural answers to their challenges. Every individual is responsible for their own actions, choices and behavior.