Self diagnosing has gone to the dogs. My dog, Molly, has PTSD. Since this past 4th of July, Molly has decided fireworks = bad, home = good. So, with the many celebrations that occur in our neighborhood, we pick and choose the more mellow ones in which to bring our dog.
It had been a long day. Steve and I just wanted a laid-back activity. So this past weekend we brought Molly along to the Holiday Parade of Boats. Local fishermen, tugs, ferries, and sailors all adorn their masts and rigging with lights and cruise up and down the harbor for all to enjoy. Being our third year observing this spectacle, we know it to be in the mellow column. We watch from half-way between the harbor and the street, away from any engine noise. It was twilight, and we positioned ourselves at the railing in front of Fort Allen relishing the warm temps with our dog by our side. Soon after the parade ended we took her off-leash so she could romp. Within seconds the cannons boomed. Tugboat horns blasted. And, yes, fireworks shot up towards us from the harbor. Apparently someone acquired more funds this time around.
It was now pitch dark, and by the second tug blast, I could just make out my dog’s outline at the top of the hill where the sidewalk starts. Tail out behind her in fine racing form, Molly was gone. Steve took the hill as fast as two legs could go, but our dog was gone gone gone. I called home to ask my daughter to check for Molly who had apparently already made it to the front door. You need to understand, it takes my dog an hour of stretching and deep consideration after I suggest a walk in the first place. Had I known my lazy 11-year-old dog could run so fast I may have signed her up for the Dog Olympics (Yes, this is a thing).
Now, if I had to diagnose myself, my disorder may be FOPD (Fear of Publishers Disorder) or more specifically, FORD (Fear Of Rejection Disorder). When I see a response in my email from a publisher, I often wait hours, if not days to open the letter. Like my dog, I flee, tail out behind me, and head anywhere away from impending doom. Is this normal? I can’t imagine Carl Hiaasen or Barbara Kingsolver ever behaved this way.
After the phone call, knowing Molly was safe, I had to laugh. I imagined myself bolting to the land without email. Did I pick a dog like me, or did I pick a dog and give her my neuroses? Perhaps something else to diagnose?
What’s your disorder?