Maddie has had me nearly all day, every day for the past 8 months of my sabbatical. To what extent it is the case that dogs and their pet humans become temperamentally similar I am not qualified to say. It is certainly the case that both she and I take a while to acclimate to change. Following semester breaks she typically mopes for a week or two, and this is following a period when I have been home and available to her only for two to three weeks. I fear she may chew up a book or experience an extended period of “blahs” since she has “had me entirely” for so much longer.

I recognize entirely two things here: first, that I will have an adjustment period of my own. I will feel overwhelmed and mentally exhausted and as a perfectionist who sometimes wants to do things exceedingly well or not at all, I have to be kind to myself and patient with the process. Even good students have bad days.

Second, it isn’t healthy for me to allow for Maddie to be my main source of companionship. Though she is safe for me as I am to her, it has been enough time that I can at least take the risk on meeting some potential candidates who are not quadrupeds. Anyone would of course have to meet Maddie’s approval, but that is putting the cart way before the horse.

It’s the first day of class and time for changes around here.



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