But I do still have a few interesting thoughts on dog-related topics, and a lot of cool pictures :) So I'm going to shift the focus here and just start posting shit that feels right, and not worry too much about format.
Here's a post I didn't get to finish up back in October. We all have our ways of processing stress. I walk the dogs, write, and then lie awake all night, while Florian runs his mouth like a fire hydrant, curses like a longshoreman, and smokes like a chimney all day only to pass into an impenetrable coma and sleep like a log all night.
Fortunately, there is help for both conditions. You my remember that I've found help for lifelong insomnia from herbs and supplements. Turns out that some of the same compounds help Florian too!
When he really gets going on one of his stressed out tirades, I've discovered that Kava Kava tincture dials him right down.
Ranting Florian becomes peaceful, spaced out, slightly smiling Florian, and we can go on a nice hike and enjoy the scenery.
On a gorgeous day in October, we brought the dogs to Catoctin Mountain Park with its historic Iron Furnace
and literally wandered around,
smiling and laughing,
the morning's anxious rant about something absolutely inconsequential but at the time all-consuming,
Not sure if it was the Kava Kava, which is in tincture form so acts immediately, or the Cortisol Manager, which is more long-acting,
but taken together the results were outstanding.
I'll note here that I do think Cortisol management is key to those of us who experience anxiety and insomnia. If you've ever been told that your insomnia is "all in your mind" and that you can control it if you just make an effort, you know what it is to want to put a health care practitioner or well-meaning friend into a deep, immediate sleep with a swift punch to the temple.
Our sleep systems are a finely-tuned machinery of tissue, chemistry, and mental states. Of course there is a physical component to chronic insomnia. I'm pretty sure that my brain chemicals are out of whack and I produce too much cortisol, hence, I sleep only when I address that.
But lately, most of the time, life seems to be addressing that for me most days! For the most part I've been sleeping with no chemical assistance the past couple of months.
I don't know why, as there's no huge difference in my habits, thoughts, or mental states between this good-sleep time and other times. I do think that relaxation and sleep feed on themselves, and a good sleep groove tends to self-perpetuate.
That was a lot of words! Time for a bit of silence. Peace to you all.