Memorial Day Weekend

For most of my life, Memorial Day Weekend represented the beginning of a brand new summer spent with my family at our house in Sag Harbor, NY. My dad named the house The Great Escape back in the early 70’s when he and my mom purchased the property on which it now stands and built the summer home for us to get away from the city for the summer. Our house was always full of close friends and family, late-night parties, loud music, happy times for my younger sister and me. When my parents divorced in the late 70’s my dad kept the house out east, my mom kept the house in the city. So much has changed over the years, but the one constant through it all was The Great Escape. It was the one place that still said home, where I spent my formative childhood and teenage years and into adulthood, where I watched my dog Maya (RIP) swim in the bay across the road, season after season, giving me the most joyful feeling imaginable.

When the house was sold two years ago, well, I was sad, torn actually, but I understood that it was time for another family to take over and build memories of their own. Today, as I sit  in my living room, taking small sips from my second cup of coffee, with Anya, my 4-year old chocolate lab soaking up the sun’s rays as she takes her morning nap on the hardwood floor, I’m feeling a mix of melancholy and gratitude. Sad that I don’t have Sag Harbor to take Anya swimming, no more bbq’s or happy hours on the deck, no more breathtaking sunsets, but thankful that I have my dad and his wife, who I will be visiting at their home on Long Island in a few hours. It will be nice to get away for the day and spend quality time with my family. I realize that what made The Great Escape such a special place, was my dad and my sister and Maya and my extended family and old friends and new friends ~ without them, the house would be simply that – a house. Although it’s no longer physically part of my life, the soul, the very essence of that house, hasn’t gone anywhere. It’s alive inside of me and everyone and everything it ever embraced.

 

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Here I Go Again

Tomorrow I’ll be heading back to the hospital for what will HOPEFULLY be my final orthopedic operation in a series of surgeries that started back in 2009. I’m a bit nervous to go under anesthesia yet again, and I already know the pain that awaits, but on the flip-side, I’m so very excited to feel good again very soon, to have a body that works and live a pain-free life.  I’m also looking forward to returning to writing/blogging on a regular basis, not only on mental health issues, but general well-being, beauty, design and lifestyle topics. I’ve got a long list of stuff I can’t wait to tackle. Now I just have to be patient for another few weeks while I recover. 

I’m so glad that I was able to see the brand-spanking new website for Bring Change 2 Mind that launched yesterday! There’s a great link to the blog page that’s well worth checking out. You can read my past entries as well as those from my interesting and talented co-contributors who, like me, have a lot to say.

Bios and Blogs on the BC2M website

There’s a new blogger questionnaire component and an updated bio for me as well – plus tons of great photos from past BC2M events, videos (including the clips I did for philosophy and HuffPo Live), media coverage and so much more. 

hope&grace initiative

In the meantime, at least I’ll have this chocolate, velvety smush (aka Anya) to keep me company while I’m recovering. 

Anya

Anya

See you soon!

Lots of love ~ Adrienne 

AMC Wall of Honor – for Maya

http://www.amcny.org/donate-amc/pet-memorial-wall/maya

Maya

07-17-1999 – 08-14-2012

I’m still mourning the loss of my Maya, so it’s emotionally difficult for me to tell her story. All I can say for now is that I was blessed to have her for 13 beautiful years. She changed me by giving me hope that life can be good – she was funny, smart and had a personality that made anyone who met her, fall in love with her within minutes. There will never be a replacement for her, and I would give anything to see her swim again.
This is for Maya, the incredible soul who came into my life at exactly the right time. I love this picture because it shows her smiling and being her funny self.

Image

AMC Wall of Honor – what a touching way to keep the memory of our lost pets alive! 

Resources for Summer Pet Travel

Great info for us pet owners!

Fur the Love of Pets

traveling dogMemorial Day has passed, school will soon end, and then comes the annual family summer vacation–an event which now more than ever before includes the family pet. Because pets are not always welcome at hotels, parks and on public transportation, planning ahead for your furry friend will help make your summer vacation memorable for fun and not for travel headaches. Here are some tips and websites to help you plan the perfect pet holiday.

General Travel Tips
For a good overview of traveling with pets, try one of these sites:

Public Transportation
During the busy travel months of summer, finding a parking spot for your car can be difficult, making public transportation especially attractive. Petsweekly.com gives…

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Is Your Dog Down in the Dumps?

Because so many of us have dogs and depression!

Fur the Love of Pets

depressed dogRecently, I answered questions from a New York Times science writer who inquired about depression in dogs for an article she was writing. The short article received a lot of attention, so I decided to expand on the topic for my readers.

Dogs Have Feelings Too
Depression is a specific psychiatric diagnosis in humans. If you look at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) definition of depression, many of the symptoms of depression cannot be applied to dogs, since they revolve around feelings. While we believe dogs have feelings, they cannot articulate sadness, helplessness, pessimism or suicidal thoughts as would humans suffering from clinical depression.

Yet, there are some signs of depression in dogs similar to those experienced by humans. Their owners may notice abrupt changes in behavior including irritability, loss of interest in activities, decreased energy and changes in appetite, all of which may signify depression. Dog owners frequently…

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