New-to-Us 2003 Newmar Dutch Star
Blog, Our Journey

Anxiety In The Balance

I kept waking up last night. I was cold. Or I had a foot or leg cramp. Or my brain simply decided 1:05, 2:30, 4:17, etc., were good times to try thinking through situations I hadn’t settled during normal waking hours.

The night before was even worse; I had food poisoning. If I’d just pulled myself out of bed and barfed – instead of first tossing and turning all night – I’d have felt better sooner.

Brian’s had restless nights since Monday, waking up thinking about RV stuff and sometimes giving in and getting up before daybreak to research or ruminate on RV stuff.

Guess What?

Doin' the Deal
Brian (r) & seller Gordon (l) inking the deal

On Monday we bought an RV. This is kind of a big deal for us, and I don’t mean to downplay its significance. Unfortunately, life did not stop to celebrate the fact that we bought an RV. We had – and still have, and will continue to have – problems and complications. This past week was a stressful one, and we haven’t even begun the transition into RV life.

I think I just need to put this dose of reality out there so you all can see that, while we are truly fortunate to be on the brink of embarking on a fantastic journey, we are dealing with the crap of ordinary life as well.

Dog Pee FTW

Laurie the Greyhound
Laurie the Greyhound

Laurie, our female Greyhound, is an old girl – 13 and some change. She’s alternately skittish and bossy, depending upon her motives. She absolutely owns Brian. Nearly every morning she’d wake him up long before the break of dawn, with soft yet persistent whining. He was attuned to it, even in his sleep, because ignoring it meant cleaning dog pee from the bedroom carpet. He’s been sleep deprived off and on for months. Most of the time I’d never hear her.

Lately Laurie’s bladder/urinary tract issues have worsened. Last time I took her in for this the vet thought she must have some sort of cancer. He put her on antibiotics to see if it would clear up, and when it did he was surprised. Maybe she does have something more serious going on. I’ll take her to the vet next week to find out. But I think it’s that it’s taking more effort for her to pull herself up and go outside to pee, so she holds it longer and gets an infection.

She’s peed on the carpet multiple times over the last week, without even asking to go out as she normally would. I’m thankful we have a Spot Bot to help deal with it, but it’s still a bit of an ordeal. Plus there’s a certain amount of pee that soaks through beyond the reach of the Spot Bot. The carpet has seen its fair share of kids and dogs and is by no means pristine, but for chrissake – we need to sell the house and dog pee will not help.

Laurie’s always been reluctant to go down to the baby-gated room we keep the dogs in when we leave, but within the last month she got absolutely crazy about it. Her legs have gotten shakier, and she didn’t like that there was a slippery hardwood landing midway down. She often raced down, sometimes skidding on the hardwoods before stumbling down the rest of the way.

Her panic was understandable, and it all got worse when I tried to help her.

I worry about how she’ll manage getting in and out of our RV. It’s a legitimate concern. But I realized recently it’d be fewer steps and turns than what she’s dealing with now.

Then sometimes I wonder if she’ll make it long enough to come with us in the first place.

Separation Anxiety

John Lee, My Buddy
John Lee, My Buddy

Our boy John Lee is eight, but he still acts like the goofy, high-strung two-year-old I brought home from the adoption kennel as a foster. Word of advice: Beware of Greyhounds with curly tails.

I felt sorry for John Lee because he was still at the kennel after most all the other dogs he’d arrived with had found homes (whether foster or permanent). Rumor has it that one of the volunteers took John Lee home but returned him the next day after he cried and whined all night.

He does often wake us up too early, but he’s never cried and whined at night. He does, however, get majorly stressed when we leave – especially me. If we have to leave him in the RV and go off to do a job, will he work himself into a frenzy? Or anger anyone nearby?

John Lee and Laurie are part of our family, and we’re not considering going on the road without them. But I admit I’m stressing out about how to make sure it goes OK for all of us.

Food Poisoning

Chick-fil-A Grilled Chicken Sandwich
The culprit?

Right now, I don’t have a comfortable, distraction-free place to work at the house. Instead, I often leave for a few hours every afternoon and work someplace with free wifi. Early last week it was Chick-fil-A. If you eat someplace enough times, food poisoning is going to happen – even in the places like Chick-fil-A who get a ‘100’ on their government inspections nearly every time.

Tuesday I just caught the luck of the draw. Nothing I ate tasted bad, so I’m guessing it was E. coli or something on the lettuce or tomato on my sandwich.

I was awake throughout the night before deciding in the wee hours that puking would make me feel better. It did, but only somewhat. Let’s just say the purge continued on all fronts. As I’m writing it’s Friday, and my guts are still…weird. I’m still feeling very tired. I did my rehab exercises but haven’t done my walking routine since Tuesday.

On a positive note, Fitbit e-mailed me this morning to congratulate me on losing 10 pounds. I guess the sensor can’t detect when weight loss is the result of vomiting and diarrhea. Feature request maybe?

Money Stress

Ideally we wouldn’t have agreed to buy an RV we couldn’t purchase outright. The more we shopped, the more we realized that we were going to have to compromise somewhere. We didn’t want that compromise to come by buying something that was less of a good fit for us than an RV that would better suit our needs over the long haul.

So now we’re going to have a small RV payment for a little while – hopefully just until we get the house sold. Since we aren’t sure about how much money we’ll bring in with the appraisal business and whatever else we’ll need to do, it’d be best to avoid debt and build reserves to the greatest extent we can.

Brian, just inside the door of our future home.
Brian, just inside the door of our future home.

This morning, after we each had another night of fitful sleep, I acknowledged the stress of the approaching dual financial burden we’d have before getting the house sold.

“We just need to generate as much revenue as possible,” Brian said in response.

He’s right, of course. Which leaves me wondering what the hell to do since I’m currently bringing in very little. I do have the bandwidth to do some website consulting or coaching, but I need to be careful about how much energy I invest there, and with whom.

Revenue generation is a touchy subject with me. I’m working on moving away from something that was a good fit only in that I bled for people, trying to coach them even when they didn’t care about their stuff. Good for their business, bad for me.

I haven’t 100% figured out how I can replace the income I earn from website consulting. I’m trying to chill about it and let the answers come.

Except…we need to generate as much revenue as possible.

Life Goes On

Life begins…
 Where the fun stuff starts.

This past week was stressful in both positive and negative ways, and we haven’t even begun what is likely to be an equally stressful transition to RV life.

Once we take possession of our RV sometime next month, we’ll have a dual load for a while as we work to get the house ready for sale and the RV ready for full-time life. We’ll have to manage it all with a budget that’s tighter because of the RV payment.

The path forward isn’t crystal clear, and I can’t think enough to guarantee it all goes smoothly. Neither can Brian. Yet it’s keeping us up at night.

Brandon Hatcher of Drive, Dive, Devour told me “Fear is just a way for your brain to tell you that you are about to do something exciting.” Brandon said he probably mangled the quote, but I think I’ll run with it as is. It’s along the lines of the magnet on the front of our fridge (pictured above).

Have you made a transition like this? Any advice or encouragement you can pass along?

3 thoughts on “Anxiety In The Balance”

  1. i don’t know if this is something you’d consider, but there are pet remedies like Bach’s rescue remedy and cbd hemp oil by PetReleaf… among other dog safe anxiety medicines. I have a young dog with anxiety and now ptsd while driving due to a car accident. I have traveled with dogs in a van, so a lot less room, and they all like it as long as I make sure to walk them a lot or let them have off leash time everyday. I wish you the best.


  2. i also recommend having a test of staying in the rv with the dogs at least one night before taking it on the road. this will help you know what to expect and help your dogs sniff it all before being in it while it moves. I have not owned a house or rv so I don’t have any advice about that, but I have traveled and lived in a van. I hope you don’t mind me sharing a few websites.


    1. We’ll definitely be doing some overnights and short trips before we go much of anywhere.

      I knew of Rescue Remedy but hadn’t considered CBD oil for the dogs. I’m definitely open to it.

      Thanks for reading & commenting 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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