Embracing Discomfort from SF to LA
Hi pawsome friends! Have you been following my journey on Instagram? I’ve been posting about my recent moving experience from San Francisco to Southern California. Yes, a month ago mom got this fun idea to move to Los Angeles.
Within two weeks we sold and donated almost everything we owned - including many of my toys! It was a tough thing to do but after mom explained to me that those toys were going to bring joy to other doggies in need, it made me feel better. After all, mom also had to let go of many of her precious items.
Moving is not something new for us and thanks to our past moving experiences mom knows just how stressful moves can be for me. And like any other dog, I love my routine and environment, and when that is altered, I can’t help but feel stressed and anxious.
A few things mom wisely did to help me cope with the craziness of the move was to arrange for a pet sitter to care for me while the movers were in and out of the house. That way she was able to focus on what needed to get done while I had fun at my pet sitter’s home, unaware and unaffected by the stressful aspects of the move.
Since mom and I were letting go of so many of our things, the move also involved having various buyers coming to our home to pick up items throughout the last week prior to the big move. Mom made sure to keep the energy calm and collected by taking me for a walk every time a potential buyer was about to arrive at our home. We would greet the buyers outside of our building and walk together to our apartment, a practice that made me feel included in the interaction and eliminated my instinct to bark at the stranger. In fact, most of these buyers love dogs and were very kind and nice to me.
Despite the optimistic attitude and conscious steps, moving can be stressful. As such, it was even more important for mom to take a daily break to enjoy a walk around the park with me. Never underestimate the power of a walk, as it is not only beneficial for me but was also critical in helping mom feel a lot more energized, which ultimately allowed her to carry out the moving tasks.
After two weeks of packing, selling, donating and tossing away, we were finally ready! I still don’t know how we were able to fit our bags and our plants into our tiny Mini Cooper, but I know that where there is a will there is a way, and we did it!
Before leaving our beloved San Francisco, mom stopped by to buy some treats for the road. After three hours of driving, I started to feel very anxious, moving around my car booster and panting. This was a sign to take a break and thankfully mom was listening. We pulled over at a gas station where mom took me for a mini walk to stretch our legs. After 15 minutes we were back in the car and I immediately fell asleep. It started to get very dark outside and I could tell there were many moments when mom felt scared about this huge transition. Luckily, prior to the car ride she put together a super upbeat playlist which she kept playing until we reached our destination. She always says music is the best and quickest way to boost our energy and make us want to dance :)
After seven hours driving we finally arrived safely in beautiful Venice, California. It’s been an exhausting journey for sure, but mom’s positive attitude supplies me with the calm and comfort that I need while I get used to my new surroundings and lifestyle.
We don’t have everything figured out yet, and mom can’t always control everything, but given our journey and how far we’ve come along I have high hopes and an optimistic view. The only thing she can effectively control is ensuring that we both maintain positive energy, which will ultimately allow us to enjoy the many great experiences coming our way. As a result of mom’s foresight and efforts, I am having a wonderful time meeting new furriends and people that are very kind to us. I also love the beach and driving around my new neighborhood.
I guess now I’ve become a minimalist chihuahua living one day at a time, and I love it! Thanks to my daily walks with mom it’s easier for me to embrace the discomfort of the move and welcome the new pawventures that lie ahead.
Love & Paws,