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Almost Amish Adventure & 8 Months in Recovery

Posted Jul 16 2012 10:21am

Another Monday, another chance to make life what I want it to be.

Last week a few things in my personal life threw me of kilter and I unintentionally took a break from my laptop so I could sort things out in my own head.  I’ve been pretty lonely and my dad was on a business trip around the country and decided that he would stop in PA before heading back to CO to give me some company.  It’s been really nice having him around  because I’ve been getting out a lot more.

On Saturday I celebrated a momentous occasion: 8 months symptom-free and in recovery!! My dad and I had celebratory pancakes:

Actually they weren’t really celebratory.  I’m the only one who keeps track of the dates and special occasions in my recovery and that’s fine.  After all, they are my achievements and I know my family and Boyfriend are very proud of me for how far I’ve come.  I was really proud of myself because I think back to this time last year and there’s no way I was healthy enough to be living on my own, driving places, taking care of a dog, starting a business, and still be in recovery and attend therapy and now DBT.

By the way, DBT is really making a difference in my life.  I now feel like I have a small tool bag of coping skills that I can pull out at a moment’s notice.  If all of a sudden I feel anxiety or depression coming on I can try breathing exercises, a half smile, observing/describing (mindfulness skills), improving the moment, etc.  DBT is starting to make me feel empowered and it’s a great feeling.

Back to weekend adventures.  Yesterday we decided to take Angie on a drive through different parts of Pennsylvania.  We didn’t have a destination in mind but just wanted to drive.  Where did we end up? In Amish country…sort of.

The trip one way is about 60 miles and we were gone for a good 5 hours.  My dad and I talked while Angie sat in the back and chewed on a toy (I always keep a chew toy in the car for her), and we stopped a few times to let her go to the bathroom and drink water and for us to do the same.

The biggest surprise was when I saw this:

Yes, that is an Amish horse and buggy complete with reflectors AND blinkers, which I did not know were allowed in the world of the Amish.  I am completely fascinated by their desire and drive to live life without technology.

The picture above is of Dutch Wonderland.  Yes, you read that right, Dutch Wonderland.  It looked to me more like a mini Excalibur hotel like the one in Las Vegas and I have been hearing tales about this place for months now and was very surprised to see it on our drive.  The sign advertised Merlin’s Party or something like that and I couldn’t help but wonder what Merlin and the Dutch had in common, unless they are trying to go for some kind of Renaissance theme.  I still don’t know but oh well! It seemed quite the tourist attraction :)

Angie did great in the car.  She whimpered a little around hour 2, wondering where we were going, but I had snacks for her also.  This is a picture of her staring at a horse and buggy and being absolutely fascinated by it.  My dad joked that Angie was thinking, “Wow, those are big dogs!” I don’t think she’s ever seen a horse before.

My dad and I took turns staying with her in the air conditioned car while the other peeked into a few souvenir stores.  I was shocked to find these hillbilly figurines in what promised to be an Amish candle store….

At least they had Amish dolls:

Does anyone remember the episode of Gilmore Girls when Luke goes on a trip with his daughter and brings back a doll like this for Lorelai? She responds with, “Aww, an Amish voodoo doll” and Luke explains that they don’t put faces on their dolls.  Lorelai quips, “What the Amish don’t know won’t hurt them, unless of course, I want to hurt them…”

We also stopped by a Dutch pie shop because my dad really loves pies.  It’s interesting, my whole family really likes pie and I really don’t like it.  Apple, cherry, blueberry, I don’t care, it’s yucky to me.  Boston cream? No thanks. Chocolate? UHH YEAH, but that’s because it’s chocolate.  Oh and Pumpkin Pie rules.  My sister has actually requested birthday pies instead of cakes on numerous occasions and she and my mom are both incredibly talented bakers.

Right near this pie shop there was the best sign I have seen in a loooong time.

I couldn’t help but laugh because there just seems to be so many conflicting things here.  The best part though is my sister’s boyfriend’s name is Jake and I had to snap a picture of this for her to send to him.  Little does he know that there is Amish BBQ that awaits him.  Move over Texas! There’s Amish competition in town!

Alright everyone.  I hope you have a wonderful start to your week! I’m hopefully going to buy a sofa today because I decided that I’m tired of sitting on the floor on the three pillows I bought when I first moved :)


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