4th of July

I don’t feel like a facebook post would allow enough characters to express the gratitude I feel today.  I am so grateful to have been born in America, so grateful to live here, so extremely grateful to all of the people who work in different capacities to protect my freedom and spread that freedom to others.  This time last year I was arriving in a completely foreign country.  While there were some wonderful parts about living in South Africa, being home has made me realize how grateful I should be to live in a first world country.  I have running clean water, a toilet, reliable electricity, a car(!!!) to get me wherever I want to go, and people who love and support me surrounding me.  I have to throw a huge shout out to all of the Peace Corps volunteers serving in foreign countries today.  I should have been in South Africa for a year today, but clearly that wasn’t in the cards for me.  PCVs battle hardships you can’t imagine every single day and I am so proud of the people in my cohort who have now made it a full year.  CONGRATULATIONS!!!  I am grateful for the work they are doing to learn about a different culture, share American culture, and share skills with non-Americans.  I am also grateful for those who have served or are serving in the armed forces who protect my freedom every day and sometimes have to give their lives to do so.  While today is a day of celebration, it’s also a day of remembrance of all of those who have given their lives to ensure our freedom.


River the Wonderdale and the Case of the $1000 Grapes

Sooooo if you read my facebook updates, you know that this weekend was a little stressful/awful/traumatizing for my family and for my baby dog.  On Saturday night, I was at a friend’s house while my parents watched River for me.  Just as she would have done if I had been home, she decided to sneak up onto the counter and get herself a little snack.  Unfortunately, that snack was about a cup of red grapes.  If you didn’t know this already, grapes are EXTREMELY toxic to dogs and can cause kidney failure anytime between 1 and 3 days after ingestion.  My parents got her to the emergency vet very quickly, where the vet recommended to me that River stay at REACH for two nights, have vomitting induced, be given activated charcoal, and stay on IV fluids until she was released, at which point I was to take her to her regular vet (the AMAZING people at Fairview Animal Hospital), to have her bloodwork done one last time.  Until the very last round of bloodwork yesterday, we couldn’t be sure that she was going to be ok.  (She is going to be fine)  So I spent the past few days completely freaking out thinking that my dog was going to go into kidney failure and die.  REACH cost me $880 and my regular vet cost me $130.  Those were the most expensive grapes I have ever purchased in my life.

Now, all of this was on top of an already existing depressive episode, which has made me irritable, sad, fatigued, and hopeless.  When you put the two together it is safe to say I’ve been a hot mess for the past few days.  I thought it would get better when we heard the good news about River, but alas my body feels like it’s made out of lead today.  I don’t want to move and it was a struggle to get out of bed and get things done today. I don’t think I can emphasize enough how difficult living with a psychiatric illness is.  Please please be compassionate to those you know who are struggling.  We know we are no fun to deal with sometimes, but your patience is so helpful.

If you’ve read this far, congratulations!  My last thought is that River’s veterinary care cost me almost my entire budget for this month, so if you or ANYONE you know needs a pet sitter, please please contact me or give them my contact information.  ( or 828.989.8017)


That’s all for today.  Thanks for reading!