Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Overcoming fears....little by little.

Last night, Hermanita and I went out to eat at Big Kahuna's.  It's a lil hot spot here in Imperial Beach that serves up some very juicy burgers! So good!! It definitely tastes as good as Island's Burgers, even a lil better!  While we were eating, she mentioned how much she missed Mr. Red and his laugh.  So being the kind friend that I am, I texted him to see if we could drop by.  He had some friends in town, but was more than happy to have us drop by.  This past weekend, his younger brother, Steele moved down from SLC, with his Great Dane, Duke.  Mr. Red prepared me weeks ago for another dog in his home.  I get very nervous & anxious around dogs.  I don't fear them anymore than not wanting to get dirty from them.  I didn't really grow up around dogs, but my teenage brothers had dogs that use to nip and jump on me as a toddler.  On my mission, I did my very best to get along with dogs, but they get me nervous...and I know that dogs can sense that, so I had to warm up to them rather quickly.
Well, Mr. Red got a dog about 2 months ago, and every time I go over to his place, he tries his best to help me get over my nervousness around his dog, Odysseus.  I'm trying, but maybe I don't progress as fast as others.  It doesn't help when a dog is excited, but luckily Odysseus is still a puppy and Mr. Red is teaching him not to jump on people.
Well, when Hermanita and I walked in, Mr. Red was on the floor playing with Ody and behind him was the BIGGEST dog I had EVER seen in my entire life!!!!!  HUGE!!!! I couldn't believe that someone would have this dog as a pet!! IT WAS LIKE A MINI-HORSE!!!! Oh man, my heart started racing!!! My breathing was shallow and faster, I was terrified....but I had to fake it since there were strangers around.   Oh, not to mention, there was a Boxer there too! Seriously, SO many dogs in one place!! I'm sure my face reflected exactly what I was feeling, as well as looking flushed with pure nervousness.  Mr. Red quickly reassured me that Duke was a gentle giant and wouldn't even bother with me.  I couldn't take my eyes off of him, he was GINORMOUS!!!!  Mr. Red was by my side as I stared at the dog, while he and Hermanita were catching up with each other.  Duke eventually made his way towards me and Mr. Red said that I should try to feed him.  He showed me how it was done, and then I took a turn at it.  Duke graciously ate the chicken from the palm of my hand and licked my hand a bit.  It tickled and my heartbeat slowed a bit.  I sat off to the side and continued watching this mini-horse/Great Dane, with eyes as big as saucers!  Steele, came and sat by me and also reassured me that Duke was a very lovable dog.  That was my first time meeting Steele and he was super nice to sit with me and convince me as to how nice Duke was.  I was slowly warming up to the idea and continued watching this giant dog that didn't bark once, and wasn't the slightest bit of annoyed by Steele's antics---messing with his face and roughhousing with him, to prove that Duke temperament would not change.  And it didn't.  Meanwhile, Mr Red kept hugging Duke and telling me that I should do likewise.  He was like a broken record and I tried to tell him that I would do it the next time I was there.  I don't know if he didn't believe it, (I was honestly telling the truth!) or wanted to help me get over my anxiety faster.  I don't like  the sound of broken records......and just wanted him to shut his trap! So I did it.....3 times.  And Duke didn't mind in the least bit.  He even rested his large head on my shoulder....and I started to melt :)

Duke, thank you for being very calm so that I could get use to you! 
I think I like you.

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