“What do you want for your birthday this year?”
“I want a dog.”
“You’re an idiot.”
No, that conversation didn’t happen between Tiny Tot and myself. It would seriously be in complete disregard of my post on words of affect. This was a conversation between a thirty-plus woman–me–and her mother–also known as Mom.
She’s heard me lament about the fact that I lose a tiny human every other weekend, during Spring Break, and over those long summer vacations. She’s heard me worried about being a single woman alone in a house at night. She’s heard my fear of a burglar breaking into the house of a single mom, while my little extension sleeping a room away. She’s also heard me talk about buying a puppy for the last three years.
Really, when I gave it thought, a dog was a great idea. Tiny Tot would have someone to play with, other than me. It would be a quick fix to his getting a little brother or sister. And, I would have someone around to cuddle with whenever I missed my little boy.
Flaunting my mother’s claim to idiocy, my tiny human and I traipsed off to a well-respected–read: expensive–puppy store, to look at the puppies on sale. I was bound and determined not to buy a single dog that wasn’t either a Rat Terrier, or a Siberian Husky. Rat Terriers are notoriously lazy, and are known for lying in a person’s lap for hours–I have had two in the past. Siberian Huskies require a lot more work, but man do I love the look of their black and white coat, and ice blue eyes.
It was a tiny ball of fur that caught my eye, though, and melted my heart. He had huge black eyes, and a full, pouting lip. When I pulled him out of the cage, and settled myself on the floor to play with him, the tiny dog crawled into my arms, and sat there. I put my hand out to see his temperament, and in response, he licked me.
Hey, I’m easy when loved, what can I say? I asked Tiny Tot what he thought of the puppy dog, and he said, “Um, good. Can we take him home to our house?”
Unfortunately, as soon as we got home, I remembered all the things I’d forgotten about puppies: they need constant attention, they have to be potty trained, and they need something to occupy almost every second of their life. I had brought home another child.
My mom was right: I was an idiot.
There I was, nursing a broken heart, trying to balance raising a child, maintaining a home, going to work, publishing a book, and blogging. … Along with the countless other projects I load onto my shoulders on a weekly basis. Now, on top of it, I threw in a dog.
Oy, with the poodles already!
The first time I really noticed the monumental task of bringing a puppy into my life was when I had to wake up at the butt-crack of dawn, get dressed, force a child into clothing, and get out the door to drive an hour to work on time. Oh, wait … the puppy. Let’s see, he has to have time to go outside, eat some food, and drink water. Hmmmm.
Mommy needed to wake up earlier to account for the new bundle of fluff. I don’t sleep enough as it is, … joy.
The second time I realized my life was becoming a Three Ring Circus was when the cream ball tinkled on the floor, the toddler stepped in it, the puppy stepped in it, and they BOTH trooped it down the hallway. Clean kid’s feet. Clean puppy’s feet. Clean mess.
Puppy helped by ripping paper towels full of tinkle out of my hands, and shredding them across the carpet. As I bent down to clean the new mess, the little dog turned on his defensive attack mode, and nipped at my fingers. All the while, Tiny human followed behind me, adopting full-on, shrieking wails, and crying, “I want to clean up the puppy’s mess! Me!”
As usual, though, life has settled down. Tiny Tot and I have adjusted to our latest addition of rambunctious love, and the added time a new puppy entails. We inappropriately named a three pound fuzz nugget after a blending of two dinosaur names. That, in itself, was an interesting debate.
“So, Son Son, what should we call the puppy dog?”
“I am not calling a puppy dinosaur. What about Rollin?”
“Ick. No. I don’t like that name. Oh! What about T-Rex.”
“So my choices are Dinosaur, or T-Rex? That’s pretty much the same thing. Okay, what about Rexaur?”
“Oh, I like Rexaur! Yes, we can call him Rexaur.”
Yes, I argue with my three year-old, and no, I’m not diplomatic when it comes to a name that I will forever have to call an animal. I am Mom.
I believe the puppy’s name suits him, though. He steals socks, bits of paper, and tiny toys, then proceeds to rip them to shreds, while growling.
It is an interesting life, having to not only care for a highly opinionated toddler, but crazy, animated puppy dog as well. Though I would have longed for the docile Rat Terrier, or the poignant Husky, I chose well. I might be an idiot, adding more stress to my already overflowing life, but this is a good type of stress.
Welcome, Rexaur, to the World of Crazy.