Puppy Love

It’s as close as Jeb will have for a sibling, and the nearest thing to a baby that the Bohemian and I will raise. On New Year’s Eve, we welcomed a new addition to our family. She is a four-legged, furry friend, and due to my up-in-the-night-to-take-the-puppy-out brain, I will not bother finding the creativity to give our new dog a pseudonym. She is simply Mae, and she is simply fantastic.

Jeb has been begging for a dog for the last seven years, and I’ve continued to put him off, citing many logical reasons for why getting a dog is just too impractical. Over the last six months I’ve begun seriously opening my mind and heart to the idea of actually welcoming a dog into our world.

If we were going to really do this doggie thing, I had wanted to go about the process with careful preparation. I began reading Cesar Millan to Jeb at night, and we all watched episodes of his series “The Dog Whisperer.” I poured over the training suggestions from the Monks of New Skete, and for the last few months I’ve been perusing Amazon.com, adding dog-related necessities to my cart, then filing them as “Save for Later.”

I have wanted everything precisely planned and well-thought out, any detail within my scope, considered and addressed.

With this formula in mind, I had hoped we’d find our perfect pet some time after the new year, but most likely not until the Spring.

It was certainly not in my scheme my to take a dog that we had never met. Nor had I imagined that Jeb, the Bohemian, and I would commit to our new family member, via text, in the airport, five minutes before boarding a plane. We sealed the deal with a thumb-tapped message that read something like: “At the risk of sounding impulsive, we’ve had a family meeting and decided that we would like the puppy…”

I would like to write more about how this adoption unfolded, because what ensued felt like a metaphorical labor for me. The Bohemian was right there beside me, as we passed through the many stages in finally bringing Mae home. But this morning, despite the fact that I set my alarm early to accommodate her pre-dawn potty break, along with some bonding belly scratches, I have run out of time. The clock says it’s time to wake Jeb for school.

Throughout my typing of this post, Mae has diffused her morning energy by wrestling with a rubber chicken not far from my feet. She has now exhausted herself, and fallen asleep with it resting by her head, as one soft ear flops over its feet. Outside the real roosters crow with their reminder. It’s time to go.

None of this is exactly what I had planned, and yet, it’s more than what I had hoped for. I trust the telling of this tale will find its outlet in the midst of puppydom.

For now, I get it. This is puppy love.

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