Sunday, October 24, 2010

The struggle

Ive been struggling with life the last 2 months.  Im not sure why or what is causing it.  Im either having a mid-life crisis or a nervous breakdown.  Im not sure which.  There are just very many days when I just cant handle anything and I just want to quit.  Quit parenting, quit my job, quit it all.  But then other days I feel back to normal again.  Really my life has gotten easier.  My husband had started doing the food shopping and the laundry.  Which I always did.  I no longer have to cart my  kids every where or spend countless hours at the doctors office.  I dont have to sit down and help anyone with homework.  So really, whats my problem.  Life is great, whats my brains problem?
Yesterday I decided to drive down to the beach.  They were having a trial down there and a b-match.  I wanted to see where Miley was on her table issue.   It takes about 2 1/2 hours to get there.  While driving down I was contemplating why I was trial chair for our agility trial.  Im not a leader and I dont evoke that, "I want to follow you", type spirit.  Which is why I didnt want to do it in the first place.  Another reason for going to the beach trial was to get a judges contract signed.  The lady who took care of the contracts for our trial  has stepped down.  No on has stepped up, so its now my job.  Thats what just keeps happening.  I keep taking on more and more jobs or have to pay someone to do the jobs. And it doesnt matter what I do or how hard I work, no one is happy.  Ive done none stopped agility trial crap since the trial ended.  I have to get these judges contract fixed because we are changing the running order. I cant put it into the AKC website unitl I have the judges signed contract.  Anyway.... I was thinking of the pros and cons of being trial chair.  Well, I found out, there isnt one thing to go into the pro collum.  Hmmm.....Wow. That kinda shocked me. I really thought maybe it might help me become more "in" with the agility group here. But it didnt.  
Miley and I went to the beach.  I didnt bring the other dogs. I needed peace and quit.  Miley is very calm on the beach. Just walks right next to me. She might go away from me a little bit but then comes right back.  We went to the beach before the b-match started. We werent there long  and she kept wanting me to throw a toy. I didnt bring one. I didnt want to chance here getting hurt.  Then we went to the trial.
I had a nice spot under these wonderful trees.   So we did our 2 runs.  She kept creeping at the start line.  I did 3 jumps at 8 inches into the chute then the table.  She circled me  and the table twice. Then came in and sat right next to me leg, which was right next to the table.  I had someone tape it but   she messed up and turned off the video when it was already on.  So no tape.  So she is sitting right next to me but doesnt want to get on the table.  It was so weird.  Every part of her body was saying, "please dont make me get on there. I really want to work for you but I cant get on that table".  It was such a weird experence.  I told her it was ok to get on the table. She finally stepped onto the table. I gave her a big hug and we ran  out of the ring to a favorite treat.    We ran one more time, the same thing.  This time I think she just circled me once, came into my leg. She did get on the table without as much hesitation as she did the first time.  I really am at a loss for what this table problem is.  Something ,that Im unaware of , must have happened she just cant get pass it. Is it fair to keep trying to get her to do it. Usually she just stresses and runs big circles around me. But this time was different.  She was in such conflict about it.  We may not be able to do AKC and just have to stick with USDAA  and just not do standard.  Thats the only class with the table.   Ive also been contemplating quitting agility.  Im not good at it.  Let face it, how many people can do 22 Exc JWW runs and not "Q".   Im not athletic and must just have poor timing.  I dont feel like Im getting any better.  Its probably not the best time to make this decision so Ill just keep thinking about it for a while.
After the b-match which was really late. I went back out to the beach. Just in time to catch the last of the dolphins playing.  There lots of them just jumping for joy.  Watching them gives me the most wonderful feeling inside. Its very good for my soul. Most of the time I got this, when taking  the pictures. LOL
But I got a few of these.
I have a ton more pictures but my compter isnt working so Im using my son's.  My computer will not open the internet at all. And when try to go into my pictures, it says the file is curupt.  Great.
(I hope this didnt come off too negative.  Im not trying to make people feel sorry for me. I dont feel sorry for me. I just needed to express some things). Really this commercial is my take on life.


Sara said...

"I'm not good at agility".....what? Yes you are! You do an incredible job. I can't tell you how many times I've been in awe of your handling skills. But, it sounds like, for whatever reason, you're not enjoying it anymore.

I think competitive agility can be very cliquey and high schoolish at times. Complainers and mean girls ruin it for us wall flowers.

Hang in there, and go watch the dolphins more often. Sounds like it is good for your soul.

Rebecca said...

Have you considered trying NADAC? They don't have tables in any classes. Maybe CPE as well, although they have the table for stopping the time in Snooker and occasionally Jackpot. Hope you start feel better about your life soon.

Amy / Layla the Malamute said...

I'm sorry that you feel like that. I know exactly how it feels, I've felt like that many, many times.

You know how they tell you not to train unless you're in a good, happy mood? What happens if you're seemingly never in a good, happy mood? I asked a few trainers that and they didn't have an answer, just a funny look.

As far as the table, I know this might sound out there, but have you considered an Animal Communicator? You'd at least find out what her aversion to the table is, and maybe from that figure out how to fix it. Melinda (from Exercise Finished) uses one and believes she's 100% legit. A few of her friends have used her too. Even myself not having used her believe her to be for real. She has a post within the past month or two about her if you want to read it and see what you think.

As far as you not being good at agility, I think you are. Honestly. I would never have thought you consider yourself not athletic, you look more graceful and athletic than a lot of people running their dogs, myself included, and I am athletic. You really are inspiring to watch. I've gone to classes or matches and thought, "I wonder what Diana would have done to handle this part of the course." Seriously! Not the MACH people where I train, or famous handlers; I prefer the way that you run courses and handle the dogs.

I hope you start feeling better. I've been there for a loooong time and it gets so old, so quick.

Priscilla said...

I'm sorry it's all been so tough on you.
Maybe Miley doesn't want to do the table for a reason. Too bad she's a dog and can't tell us why. I think that you should just let her do what she is happy doing and not make her do something she doesn't want to do.
Nice shot of that dolphin there! Lucky you can go watch them :)

Ricky the Sheltie said...

You are incredibly good at agility! Sorry you feel so bad still. Miley's injury must be a major part of why you have been wanting to quit everything, don't you think? Now Miley is healed and you can get back to training with her. She must be so happy to do agility again! Don't know how you will ever solve the table problem, but I have faith in you and know that if anyone can do it it would be you!

I have thought about trying CPE or NADAC just for the more relaxed and supportive atmosphere. I don't worry about other people though and when I go to trials or even to class my experience with Ricky is my number one priority. I am friendly to people but I don't go there for the human interaction and I don't go out of my way to make friends. If Ricky couldn't do agility any more, I wouldn't either.

I am so sorry that you are having such a hard time - I believe it will get better! Take care and hang in there!

It must be so amazing to see those dolphins!

Dawn said...

I know that no matter how many of us assure you that you are our agility inspiration you 're still going to feel bad. Maybe you do need a break, though that would be sad with Miley getting better, because she loves to do agility. And you love it too, when it connects. Maybe you need to step down yourself from the agility management thing and take a break from it all.

Whatever you do, I hope you continue to hang out with us, because we'd miss you if you left!

Love the dolphin picture, how cool that you're able to see them!! They don't get Miley all excited?

Sam said...

Diana.. you are amazing at agility. The comments you leave me are some of the most insightful I ever get. You have a real knack for it. And, you really have great patience - think about how much I'm stressing with Marge - yet you've remained mostly cool and collected through all of the re-training you've done with Miley. Don't beat yourself up! I go through slumps like this, too, sometimes life just catches up with you.. and in my case, hormonal mood swings at certain times of the month don't help, either!

Kathy said...

I am so sorry you are going through this patch, it is hard to be feeling like that...been there and it is the worst....but you are fantastic at agility and a fantastic trainer, and a really caring and kind person, but I agree when you really get into clubs people can end up very high schoolish, and I find that very hard to take-hope you know if you need a shoulder or just a friendly ear you are welcome to call me anytime, or to email anytime-you were my first blogger friend and I really like you so feel free if I can ever help in any way. ((HUGS)) Kathy

Elf said...

It's nice to think that one can just snap out of a place where one is sad or blue or down when really one believes that life is good and one SHOULD snap out of it. Believe me, I know it's not that easy. If one is often feeling that way--or "been there for a loooong time" and "never in a good, happy mode," that's a sign that something's wrong the same way that having a pain in one's shoulder that won't go away is wrong, or a cough that never goes away or that keeps coming back over and over. It's hard for people to accept that one's emotions are ruled by the body as well. I can't emphasize enough looking for assistance. I have found that, when I've gotten really bad, the appropriate chemical adjustment helps me get out of it, as does some training to identify patterns that keep me in the wrong place (I htink of it as physical therapy for my thought processes), and in particular I find that mindful meditation helps tremendously especially if one can learn it from someone who also understands about depression.

I'm just sayin'. You don't have to accept that you feel this way any more than you have to accept any other ailment, and you don't have to feel that you're supposed to be able to fix it yourself any more than you do any other ailment.

Anonymous said...

So sorry you're having such a crappy few months. I feel you- when the rest of your life isn't going well, agility just loses its appeal. Don't force it. If you don't feel like playing, don't. If you force it, it just won't be fun for you or Miley and you both will wind up resenting it. (Hmm, I remember saying something like this to another handler with a talented Sheltie named Miley recently!)
For me, I remember last summer when I was pretty depressed and wondering what the heck was wrong with Marron... I kinda wonder if she wasn't picking up on my generalized depression about being jobless and hopeless. Maybe all the stress related to being the trial chair is souring your outlook on agility and a little on life? I say try to cut back on your responsibilities, take a break from agility, and come back when you're fresh and feeling good about life again.

Nat said...

I hope you feel better about everything soon. I bet this is just a period of your life that you'll look back on later as a thing of the past.

And -- you're totally great at agility! I think you have training skills that a LOT of people would love to have, and same goes for your handling! Honestly. I'd miss reading your agility posts if you stopped agility, and I'm sure the rest of us would too; stick with it for your fellow bloggers! ;)

Gorgeous photos by the way!

Morganne said...

Well I have to disagree with you on one point... I think you are a very good handler AND trainer. Your handling is very fluid. Miley is not an easy first agility dog and you've done a wonderful job with her. Solving a stress problem is highly challenging for even the best trainers. Perhaps doing NADAC might bring back the joy you feel running agility with your dog.

It sounds like you are overwhelmed. When I used to show horses, I volunteered for many positions and duties and ended up getting so burned out it sucked the fun out of simply showing my horses.

Nicki said...

Don't give up on agility yet, you just need to spend some time to find a way to make it fun for you and your dog again. I agree with Rebecca-try NADAC, it's super relazed, the people always seem nice and there is no table. And also no refusals!

I remember breaking down after one of Legend's miserable runs and thinking what was I going to do with this 3 year old dog that acted like she hated agility. But we worked through it and are having fun again-both of us!

Marie said...

I agree with everyone else that you are great at agility and you have done a fabulous job with Miley.

I have a friend that has always taken on a lot of responsibilities for the different clubs she's involved with and at the trials, and honestly, people don't seem to appreciate all the hard work, they just give her more and more. If you're feeling pressured and not enjoying it at all, I say it's time to step back a bit and let someone else do the work for a while.