I turn 18 in one week exactly. How that happened I’m not entirely sure. I’m almost positive that just a few months ago I was getting ready for my first homecoming. That it was only just a week ago that I decided I was going to make World Team one day (Yes, it was a decision I made in the moment, little did I know how much it would entail). It doesn’t seem possible that these moments I have dreamed my whole life about: prom, graduation, senior homecoming would all the sudden be here, now.
I wrote a post similar to this one right before my 17th birthday. As I go back and read it I am amazed at how much has changed since then, how much I have changed. Over the last year I have learned more about myself that I would have thought possible. Some of those lessons were forced upon me, lessons about growing up and rising above, lessons that were incredibly hard to learn. Some of those lessons were filled with joy, lessons about not giving up, and fighting–Insert cute picture of Wave.
I thought I would be “over” Check by now. That he would be a memory, and a lesson. I never thought I would still shed tears over him. I never thought that anytime a picture came up of him, that I could physically feel my heart ache. I never would have thought that a puppy I didn’t even have that long could leave such a mark on me. I miss him, but most of all I am thankful for him. He inadvertently taught me so much, and forced me to grow up a bit. I think Wave was a gift for pushing through.
Wave is officially starting big girl agility training. There are planks and 2x2s in her very near future. I often get asked how old she is, and when I say that she is over a year and a half, and no we aren’t trailing, nor are we even close, they seem a bit surprised. Wave hasn’t been ready for big girl things, and neither have I. We have been taking everything slowly. This isn’t to say we haven’t been training, because we have, its just been methodical. I have a vision of what I want our training to be like, and so far it has been just that. It’s been quite a learning experience. Wave is a lot like me, in that faster is better, and thoughtful is boring. It’s been hard to change that mindset, in both of us. But now I have a dog that doesn’t scream at the top off her lungs when she has to think, and I am able to do things at less than 100 mph. We have both learned that faster isn’t always better. As a result of this, we have some of the cutest tricks in town.
It has definitely been a journey to get here. A journey filled with tough lessons, and a whole lot of growing up. Some days my heart feels so full of joy and light that I think I could power the whole world on sheer love alone. Other days there is hole in my chest. A hole made up of failures, missteps, and a whole bunch of almosts. There are plans and lists and goals. Things will get done, dreams will be reached. But until then there will be small victories, and small mistakes and a beautiful adventure.