I randomly got a text from my mother today encouraging me to take Nico down to the High Street where she was out with my aunt to socialise him. At first, I didn’t want to. I would have to find trainers, get off my backside, go outside into the real world where people are and really, it was a large pile of DNW. My anxiety wanted to say hell to the no but, then I thought about Nico. It would be good for him, and he had been pretty rowdy this morning so it might calm him down. I thought about it a little more and decided to take him down. So, I bundled him up in his blanket and nervously left the house. He isn’t old enough to be allowed to walk himself yet but socialising with sounds, smells and people is encouraged.
I didn’t want to go. It was the first time my anxiety was really an issue with Nico and the first time he booted it in the face for me and let me do it anyway. It was for Nico, so I did it. This is one of the reasons I got him in the first place. At first, all we got were some looks as people tried to work out if that ball of fluff they could see was alive. He was silent the majority of the time and it wasn’t until he had nearly reached the main street that it happened. Someone came up to us.
I was walking, then suddenly a woman was smiling at me and reaching for Nico. My first reaction was panic to be honest. He is a purebred dog and he is worth a lot of money to someone who doesn’t care about him so much as they just see pound signs. However, the woman just started petting him and asked how old he was. I was pleasantly surprised to find I was able to respond fine and hold a very quick conversation with her while Nico lapped up the attention. She wandered off and I made my way down the street feeling proud of myself. I had talked to a stranger and there was no panic attack in site. Nico looked up at me for a second and I convinced myself he was saying well done.
Many people came up to us on my way to meet my mum. Most wanted to pet Nico, ask how old he was, what breed, and comment on how cute he is. (so proud, so proud. Yes he is :3) I coped pretty well considering the number of strangers I was having to deal with and though my stomach lurched at times, it felt good to have Nico in my arms like a warm balm, protector against the scary people. He was very well behaved and we made it to our destination without any crises. It showed me that yes, he is going to be amazing for me in the future, because he already is and he isn’t even a grown boy yet. (Though he is a fast growing boy with a love of yogurt pots) We got home with me feeling proud and Nico feeling tired. He went off for a well deserved nap and I returned to my room to lurk and be proud.
Also of note is that the walk took a mile and even if it was only me walking, it was most definitely our first mile to Mordor. Look at us go~
Nico and Sam :3
Nico and Sam :3