My new service dog in training.

On July the 8th 2017, I got my first dog. I adopted a border collie/lab mix named “Nikki”. That day was so exciting!


We are in the car. I am rocking back and forth because I am so excited, I am going to meet Nikki! This is soooo exciting! After waiting for what seemed like eternity to get to our destination, we finally pulled into the parking lot. I see a small black dog with a woman outside the building. We walk up, and it turns out to be Nikki! Nikki wags her tail excitedly. We decide to go inside, the woman, whose name is Liz, demonstrates some of the service dog tasks she has learned such as deep pressure therapy, block, and watch my back. I am hoping with all my heart that that I can take this sweet girl home. My mom asks about taking Nikki home. My heart flutters with excitement as the papers are filled out, and then we were out of the door and on the way home with Nikki. Later on that evening after a trip to PetSmart and Orange leaf, in which Nikki got a small amount of vanilla froyo, we headed home. That night she jumped onto my bed, she looked at me like “I am going to sleep on your bed with you, right??” So I let her sleep on my bed. At one point she came up beside me and licked my face, such a sweet dog. I think she is going to be a great service dog with more training.

 That was an exciting day. Nikki is learning how to sit, lay, and I am going to be teaching her come, stay, anxiety alert, and guiding through a crowd. Her vest, which we ordered today, is supposed to come on Wednesday. I am excited to start the process of training Nikki to be a service dog.



Beautiful yet flawed, my inner self.

Red hair,

Fair skin,


Brown eyes,

Long legs.

I am beautiful,

But flawed at the same time.




Good with animals,

But flawed.


I have scars that won’t seem to fade,

The tears slowly drip down my face,

I always seem to be making mistakes,

And being criticized,

For being the person I am.


I am tired of feeling lonely,

Where the darkness seems to be my friend,

I am tired of panic attacks,

That try to steal away my breath,

I am tired of anxiety,

That whispers and screams in my head,

I’m tired of the demons,

That have made a home inside my head.


The demons,

They are there,

Waiting patiently,

To pounce on my mistakes,

To catch me when I’m down,

They whisper I’m not worth it,

They whisper I’m a mistake,

And they silently cheer when I start going under.


I start slipping,

All of my progress seems like nothing,

I feel alone,

I start sinking,

Slowly into the depths.


All the pain that I have experienced,

Seems to never fade,

They are my scars, my battle wounds,

The cracks that remind me,





I am beautiful, yet flawed,

Because I am these things,

I wish the pain would fade away,

I wish the demons would be quiet,

I wish I could be good enough,

Will I ever be?



A poem written by an Autistic individual.


Lonely Girl

I wander around,

Looking at the groups of people,

Talking, laughing,

Smiles, frowns, hand movements.

I stand by, watching,

The conversation goes on,

I cannot find a way to enter,

I slowly walk away.


Another group,

Adults talking,

Can I fit in here?

The conversation keeps running,

Each person chipping in their part,

But I cannot find a way to be a part of their group,

And so I still search.


I find a group of girls,

Laughing, giggling, and chatting.

I would like to say something, but I cannot,

the words are stuck in my mouth,

Like glue is attached to my words,

So I still wander.





Will I ever find a place?

have a friend that I can talk too about my passions?




Service dogs,



And Autism.


Sometimes the loneliness creeps in,

And I cry silently on the inside,

And sometimes the tears start dripping on the outside,

Slowly making wet lines down my face,

I wander “Will I always feel this way?”

Because I just want someone to be with,

To fill the gap of loneliness that I feel.


Someday I hope,

I will have friends,

A group that I can fit into,

So that I don’t feel lonely anymore.




A poem about lonliness and anxiety written by an Autistic person.










My struggle with panic attacks


 Lately I have been struggling with panic attacks. I have severe anxiety, which could be related to me being Autistic, but it also could just be something that I have. I have not been diagnosed with an anxiety disorder, but I am thinking that maybe I will be diagnosed with an anxiety disorder(s) in the future. So, what are my panic attacks like?

I think panic attacks are different for every person. I myself do not have all of the symptoms for a panic attack, but I do have a lot of them, and they vary in each panic attack. The symptoms that I have experienced are (1) Increased heart rate, irregular heart rate, (2) abdominal distress/stomach ache, (3) Tight/heavy chest, (4) difficulty breathing, (5) tight muscles, (6) tingling in hands, feet, or legs, and (7) dizziness.

Panic attacks exhaust me, it saps the energy out of me. Sometimes all I can do is lay in my bed and wait for the panic attack to subside. I can also hide my panic attack very well, people could look and me and probably tell that I’m not going crazy, but on the inside my body is in panic mode. Sometimes my panic attacks are triggered by me thinking about something that makes me feel anxious, and sometimes they just pop up on their own.

One of the only things that helps me feel calm is dogs. Breathing exercises do not help me feel calmer. This is why I want my own service dog, because a service dog could help me in the following ways,

(1) Recognizing changes in my heart rate and breathing

(2) Providing DPT (deep pressure therapy) to help calm me

(3) Doing tactile stimulation (licking the face, hands, or arms)

(4) Alerting to panic attacks

(5) Reminding me to take my Zoloft

(6) Guiding me through a crowd

(7) Guiding me to an exit

(8) Getting help


Service dogs can also help with loneliness. Dogs have many health benefits including lowered blood pressure, increased serotonin levels, reducing depression, etc.

I hope to get a service dog. I would really like a Cairn terrier puppy to train to be my own service dog, but if my family cannot afford a Cairn terrier, than I want to look into adopting a small to medium size dog (even though I wish I could take all adoptable dogs home).

The best thing to do for someone having panic attacks is listen, and just be there for them. They may feel like they are dying, and they need someone to reassure them that it will be ok. If the panic attack is severe, he or she may need medical help. It is also worth a try to recommend trying breathing exercises, therapy, meditation, or seeing a doctor. It’s not just in our “heads”, panic attacks feel very real to those of us who have panic attacks.