I just got a puppy. For the first time. Ever. And he’s 100% adorable and sweet (as you can see).
But holy smokes he is triggering me!
See, I didn’t actually want a new baby. (I know, a puppy isn’t a baby. But you’ve got to admit there are some similarities from the whole “totally dependent and time-consuming” angle.)
I’d had some pretty intense post-partum depression after my first baby. So there’s the trigger right there – this lack-of-freedom, and being-at-someone’s-beck-and-call is all too familiar. In a not-so-fun-way.
I dug my way out of that the first time around. And all these years later – my boys are 8 and 10 now – things have hit a lovely, expansive stride.
All is good. At least it was. Until said-puppy.
That said, I’ve changed a lot since 2005 when my first baby came along. I feel different this time around. Of course part of that is the fact that it’s just a puppy, not a human. But I myself am different too. I have different “tools” that I’ve been, thankfully, able to apply. Here are some of them, in case they can help you through your own set of triggers.
- Just because it happened that way last time, doesn’t mean it needs to be that way again. For me, this means “Just because I had post-partum with my human-baby, doesn’t mean I’ll have it with a dog-baby” Especially (and quite obviously), in this case, because my hormones aren’t involved. I also realize that this baby phase passes much faster with pups than with people. Check in with yourself – what is, or can be, different this time around for you? Do what you can to make those changes, or focus on the fact that they already exist.
- This too shall pass. Yes, we know this, but it’s so easy to forget. Especially when we’re in the thick of something challenging. But this longer-term vision can give a great deal of relief. It takes your eye off the immediate stress, and brings your focus to evidence that things have in the past, and will in the future, get better.
- Allow it to be. I know that this is a tough one, particularly if the challenging time is really tough. But invariably, when I focus on Allowing, I loosen up my freaky-tight resistance to the difficult situation. It makes my own mental state so much more manageable. And in the magical way of the Universe, once I do this, the blasted thing actually goes away sooner. I can’t explain it, and I know it sounds crazy, but I urge you to try it. Stop resisting, and see what happens.
- Take Better Care of You. Because let’s face it, when we’re triggered our energy gets zapped. This brings things from bad to worse, really fast. Whenever we prioritize self-care (even just a bit of it!), we’re better at handling…well, everything. The bonus here? It’s really nice to feel “cared for” in the midst of tough times. And whether we like it or not, it is up to us, and no-one else, to fill our own well (take a look here if this is a tough one for you to believe).
- Ask for help. GASP! But really, when we’re pushed past our limits – or even long before that point – it’s a good idea to drop the sense that you have to hold the world up on your own. You’re not Atlas, and there are no points for trying to be – just a whole lot of frustration and fatigue. I find that most of my clients (and friends and neighbors and myself) think it’s a sign of weakness to ask for help. Au contraire. It’s a true sign of strength to find a better way of doing things, to wisely delegate, and to get the rest we need in order to be the best that we can be.
So, little Vinny, welcome to the family! And thank you for showing me all the ways I’ve changed, and for reminding us all that the view can indeed be different each time around.
As always, if you’d like help support on your journey, contact me for a FREE 30-minute consultation so we can set you up to soar.