As you know, I am always with my mom. In fact, we are seldom ever separated. I know everything that my mom needs and can anticipate her every move. We work together as one, like two dance partners floating across the ballroom floor!
The special bond and connection that my mom and I share did not come easily or quickly. But instead, it took several months for us to get to know each other. And how to work together as a team.
In past posts, I have told you about living with my puppy raisers. And then going on to professional training. It was a big change and adjustment for me to leave my puppy raiser family. And learn to trust my trainer. The adjustment period when going off to “college” was hard. Although with time I did adjust.
But I wasn’t so sure about going through another change when I was partnered with my mom. She was nice and gentle and quiet. I liked her. But I loved my trainer and thought I should stay with her.
While we were in Team Training and I was working with my mom I listened and did what she was asking me to do. But I kept a watchful eye on my trainer. It was a little confusing. It sure did seem like I should go back with her.
Then to make it even more confusing my puppy raisers showed up. I hadn’t seen them for nine months so I was very excited that they were there. But what was I to do?
All of these things happening were making me a little unsure. The puppy raisers that I loved and my trainer who I also loved. And now this new person who I thought I might love.
We had graduation at the end of our Team Training. This was to celebrate our completion of training and our partnership. But also to acknowledge the key role that my puppy raisers played in my success to become a service dog. It was exciting. But emotional for everyone, even me!
We said our goodbyes to my puppy raisers. And to my trainer. And to our classmates. Saying goodbye is always hard. Although in a way kind of exciting, too. My mom and I were ready to embark on our new journey together!
When we got home to what was to be a new house for me I had to adjust to the changes and get used to a new routine. I listened to my mom but was only doing my job because I knew that is what I was supposed to do.
It was going to take time for us to trust each other and build a relationship. How do you do when a new school year begins? Do you find it hard when you have to get used to your new teacher and learn their expectations?
I had questions. Many questions. Was this where I was going to stay? Or would there be more changes like I had already experienced? Would I learn how to work smoothly with my mom? And know what she wanted and needed?
As the days went on I was starting to settle in. And was hoping I was here to stay. Because my mom was becoming very special to me!
We did daily training sessions and I was learning new things. My mom brushed me and we established a daily grooming routine We went on fun outings. And to lots of medical appointments. I loved meeting all of her friends. And the doctors and nurses who cared for my mom.
The more we did together and the more places we went my confidence increased. And the same was happening for my mom. We began to slowly know and understand what each of us wanted and needed. It became comfortable.
It did take time for me to fully trust my mom. And learn what she needed. As we grew together as a team we began to dance as one. Knowing what each of us needed became part of who we were.
As the years have passed our bond has become stronger. And our love for each other is like no other. Our hearts beat as one. My mom tells me that I make an ordinary day extraordinary. And I can easily say that she does the same for me!