No More Miles to Johnson-Howard’s!!!
We Be Home!!
And Emmy is settling in NICELY!
Truth be told, I was sick with worry and shaking – I’ve never had such a case of test anxiety! But on no test has as much been riding. I shouldn’t have worried. Emmy sailed through – she did drop my wallet, but she picked it right back up and we went on with the “checkout transaction” scenario. Jen and Sue asked me several times during the test if there was anything I wanted to do over, but actually, I was in general pleased with Emmy’s performance, and said so. I was so “blasted” that I couldn’t have repeated almost anything! Emmy and I have done some things better, more crisply in practice, but we performed rather nicely on the actual test. I’m sure my anxiety was transmitted to her to some degree. I didn’t want to repeat something only to have my increased nervousness transmit to her, so I said no to all but one, but now I can’t remember what that one was!
I was a zombie through most of the test, but I remember most of it. I was really shaking and very weepy as Ted and I drove to the restaurant. But that’s the way I am. I will function through a crisis or a test, and fall apart later. At the restaurant, Jen and Sue came in, sat down and didn’t say much. The tension rose and rose and rose. After E and S got there with A, Jen went over and removed the “In Training” patches from Aubrey’s cape pockets!! And gave E her “official” ID card!! Then she did the same for me! I was so weak at that point, I could hardly even say “Thank you!!” I did manage to “mug” for the camera with my new ID card.
One of the volunteers, R, had made little scrapbook photo albums of the dogs as pups and their training. They are wonderful! I’ve been going through mine today and savoring each pic. Will have to scan some of them in and put them here.
The lunch itself was made memorable by the sharing of memories of the past 2 weeks. I was so “tender in the tummy” that all I could manage was a chicken salad sandwich and some southern sweet tea. I’m sure some of my “weirdness” was related to the flare I was working on.
We drove home with the Ol’ Curmudgeon’s heavy foot keeping us semi-flying! Even with 3 stops to stretch and “business” Emmy, it was only a 3 1/2 hour trip. We drove up the driveway at 6:15pm, and were greeted by 4 grandsons sitting on the steps waiting to help unload the car!! Thank goodness for them! By that time the Ol’ Curmudgeon’s back troubles had him almost bent double. The boys got everything into the house – and seemed to understand about letting Emmy get adjusted before they got to know her. Bless their hearts, they worked like little trojans. One said, as I was working with Emmy who wanted to investigate and smell everything all at once, “She sure does what she’s told.” My response was, “Yes, and let that be a lesson for you!!” That particular rapscallion does get into trouble a bit more than some of the others!! 🙂
We ate much later than usual, and I fed Emmy later than she normally will be fed in the future. I went ahead and let her have some water after about an hour, then we all went to bed – Emmy in her crate in the family room. About 2AM, I heard her whining, and took her out for a piddle. About 4AM, the Ol’ Curmudgeon took her out, but he has no idea what she did or didn’t do! He was absolutely sleep-walking! Then about 6AM, she started being flakey again. I wasn’t sure whether it was that she needed to go potty again, or if it were something else. Turned out to be the travel alarm clock! It was going off in the office in a suitcase. I turned it off and took her out on general principles. She was more interested in sniffing and investigating than in “doing business,” but I finally convinced her to piddle a little.
I’ve been doing the usual “sit,” “stay,” “down,” “stay,” “stand,” “place,” etc. Took her with us to Petsmart for a few things, then she and I waited in the car together while the Ol’ Curmudgeon investigated Home Depot for dog-proof trash cans and some locks for the gates of the fence of the backyard. Then the Ol’ Curmudgeon stayed with Emmy in the car while I went to Publix for a few things we need to get us through until Wednesday (Senior Citizen’s 5% off day!). Emmy was glad to see me get back to the car, and was a trooper all the way home.
After we put groceries away, we rested a bit, then Emmy helped me load the laundry!! She “got” things out of the suitcase and “handed” them to me so I could toss them into the washer. This was an incredible help to me – I didn’t need to bend down and I didn’t need to pick things up. She even “handed” me a pair of the Ol’ Curmudgeon’s overalls!
I’ve tried to keep her fairly quiet most of the day, but the trek to the stores was imperative!
One last vignette, and then I sign off for the day – On the way home, Emmy was in the backseat in her seatbelt harness. She wriggled herself around and worked on getting her face up as close to me as she could. I put my arm over and hung onto the back strap of the Ol’ Curmudgeon’s seat. She proceeded to rest her muzzle on my arm for about 1/2 hour! It was so cute. I got a couple of half-decent pics. Will have Eldest son download the pics tonight and send the pics to me for posting here.
Tomorrow, I will spend most of the day working on cases and doing laundry. I’ve found it fairly easy to integrate her training maintenance into my day today. I will be positive and consider that it will be the same in the future.
How wonderful to have a service dog! And I do believe she is just exactly what I have been needing. The Ol’ Curmudgeon assures me that dog spit is good for my complexion!! She does love to give me doggie kisses!! And I do love getting them!
Aunt D is doing a smidgen better. Please keep her, Uncle O and their family in your prayers. Also my DIL, S, who is taking care of Uncle O most of the time. She is exhausted, but gamely keeping on.