March 6th will mark one year since I brought my sweet boy Axel home with me. I made a huge decision to adopt him and I have not once regretted it. Today I wanted to share about him and about why I got him.
Several months before I went to go look at the shelter for my new family member, I began thinking about getting an emotional support animal. I am in college and I also struggle with some mental health issues. At the time, I was taking Vyvanse, because my doctor believed I had ADHD. This drug caused me to have anxiety attacks as it wore off, which happened to be about 3 in the afternoon everyday. This was no way to function.
I addressed it with my doctor and he gave me anxiety pills. Once I decided a dog was the best option for me, I asked my doctor for an ESA letter so I could keep him on campus with me. Instead of providing me with a letter, he said I should be put on adderall on top of the Vyvanse. This didn't make me happy and I didn't support this decision. I was so scared of combining these two prescriptions that I didn't even try it.
Since I couldn't get a letter from my doctor, I got one online and never saw that doctor again. I brought Axel home on the 6th of March. I remember convincing my boyfriend to take me to the shelter to go look at dogs. When we found Axel, my boyfriend just held him and look in his eyes I knew we weren't leaving without him. At the time, it was crazy for me to adopt him, but my heart has never been filled with more love.
The next two weeks were very difficult. I never owned a dog and Axel was very sick for a week or two. The first day he was peeing blood. I had to take him back to the vet the next day. They gave him some meds and it continued for another week or two. I never got a definite answer if it was from being fixed or the stress of moving into a new place.
By the end of the week he developed kennel cough. My boyfriend at the time and I stayed up all night holding him because that was the only way he wouldn't cough. It was bad. When he coughed he sounded like a duck, kind of funny at the same time. I also adopted him with heart worms. And I am so blessed to say that after going through the treatment he is now heart worm free!
When I first got Axel, he was so scared. It broke my heart. I had to carry him outside to get him to walk. He wouldn't really eat so I had to feed him whatever he would eat, which for awhile was only a raw egg. Now my sweet boy loves to go for walks. He loves to run and he loves to snuggle up next to me.
Getting Axel was one of the best decision I made for my mental health. For the past year, I have had issues with anxiety that I never really told anyone about, mostly because I didn't know what was going on with me and how to explain it. In the past 4 months a lot has changed in my life that has caused a significant amount of stress.
In November, I broke up with my boyfriend of almost 2 years. This change of being single again and having no one there to tell my problems to was hard. It was scary to be "alone" even though I wasn't truly alone. One of my close friends also left to go back with their family in December. In January, I started having daily anxiety attacks. I was severely depressed. I felt like I had no control over anything, including my thoughts and emotions. This was caused by several factors, but mostly the fact I am in my last semester of college and it is time for me to get a real adult job and make real adult money and do real adult things. This is super scary. I have never been able to cope with stress well, and this time was no different.
My friends and family may read this and I just want y'all to know I didn't know how to tell anyone and I didn't know what to say.
I started to see someone in January. When all this started to unfold, I didn't know how to tell them I had no control over my emotions and what my brain thought. I remember him telling me to get out of my head and I wished more than anything I could do just that. I didn't know and I still don't know how I will ever tell someone I want to date that I sometimes don't have control over my thoughts and emotions. I ended up pushing them away, which turned out to be a good thing. I needed time to myself to learn about who I am and to figure out how to cope with stress. I also needed to recover from this spell.
So now how does Axel play a part in all this? He was my constant lifeline. On the days I felt to broken to get up, I knew I had to because he needed a walk and he needed food. I couldn't not walk him. On the nights I felt alone, he was always curled next to me. He doesn't care if I am a broken mess, he doesn't care if I cry for two hours straight, he loves me no matter what.
He is my world. He has added so much value and life to my life. It may have been crazy at the time to get him, but I will never regret that choice I made that day.
My name is Mikala. I am here trying to figure out this thing called life.
©Copyright 2017 Mikala Smikal