Day 1 of the Great Dog Experiment
You know how people who don’t have kids get a dog and say something like, “maybe this will help us be ready for kids someday.”
Yeah, I have kids and they didn’t really help me prepare for a dog.
This morning was a bit of a nightmare. I recognize that some of the problem is my over active sense of duty (Reily MUST get plenty of exercise before we leave for school/work) which had me trying to play ball with him in a rainstorm and slushy snow while also trying to get the girls their showers/breakfast/lunches/bags packed, all while wearing a skirt and sweater. Lovely. I ended up with a muddy dog, two girls with soaking wet pants, all four of us whining at one point or another, and none of us feeling all that peaceful and loved.
I sat a work (smelling like a certain yellow lab) and wondered if I’m cut out for life as a dog person. I always wanted to be a dog person. I dreamed of being a dog person. And if I am ever going to BE a dog person, this is probably my best shot.
I came home convinced I could make it work. Jumped out of the van, changed into jeans in 15 seconds flat and got Reily out of his crate. He was bounding with joy as we headed outside and couldn’t contain his excitement when I pulled out the leash.
We walked down the road, I was feeling all dog-lady like.
He stopped to pee. OK, that’s cool.
He stopped to do some “business”. I wasn’t ready for that.
How could I NOT be ready for that?! Seriously,what was I thinking he’d do on a walk? Talk politics?
We walked a little further before turning around to head for home and some plastic bags. I got the bags and headed with Reily back down the road (meeting the school bus on the way) to clean our mess.
I don’t care how many diapers you change, nothing prepares you for needing to scoop poop using your hand and a plastic bag.
We all came home, I played more catch with the dog while the girls worked on homework, and then I started to make dinner.
It took a total team effort to get spaghetti with sausages and meatballs made. Zoe manned the leash, Madeline blocked the door while I maneuvered between the grill and stove.
I was stared down and breathed on the whole time.
The whole time.
If unconditional love is hot breath on your back and two eyes watching your every move, I think I’ll be happy with the conditional love I was used to. I apparently can handle those conditions.
A dinner of dog breath and lots of “Reily, down” was what we experienced.
I’m trying. I really am. But I feel like I don’t get much quality time with the girls and Country Boy as it is, so adding in a creature who seems to need my complete attention has been exhausting.
My tail tonight is between my legs as I head to my safe space. I hope I get out of bed tomorrow with as much energy as that cute dog is going to have when I go down to get him.
And, for now, the girls are calling me a real “Business woman,” thanks to my curbside duties.