“Can we please get a dog? Please??!!” The plea and begging that you would only expect from children…only they were my words, out of my mouth, and directed to my husband.
Having grown up with pets, I was really starting to feel the urge to want one for our family. In fact, I had been for a while. There is something about pets (for me it is dogs specifically) that bring a sense of joy and stability to a family. Not to say that there isn’t joy with my two beautiful children, but it’s been quite the year of grief and goodbyes. And as a result, I have been left with this empty feeling, and one that I was eager to fill. Things really peaked when we lost my husbands parents this summer, after they unexpectedly passed away one week apart. It was one of the hardest things we have had to face and especially so, for my husband. Needless to say, 2013 hasn’t been kind, but I was determined to change it.
I am not usually known for my spontaneous behaviour but when I set my mind to something, I am determined to get it. On this one particular day, while glancing at pictures on various social media sites, I came across this picture of a puppy. My heart immediately warmed and I found myself smiling at the cute face on my screen. I had to have a puppy. And so it began.
My husband has never grown up with pets, so we didn’t exactly see eye to eye on this. I had asked, and sometimes begged, if we could please get a dog, but the answer was always “not now”. I knew that introducing a pet to our family was exactly what we needed; what I needed. So, I did what any devoted, loving and caring wife would do. I schemed up a way that I knew would make it difficult for him to say no! I booked an appointment with a breeder to have “a look” at the types of dogs…an education session if you will. *grin*
Exactly one week later, I am sitting in my kitchen writing this blog post, with my sweet ten week old goldendoodle puppy Maddie, resting by my feet. So how has this little girl changed our lives? Well, if there was ever a void, I can’t find it. Or shall I say, I don’t have time to feel it. I believe it’s fair to say that I’m overflowing…with responsibility, distraction and of course, unconditional love. It’s been quite the ride with this little pup. As pretty close to having a newborn baby as you can get. But I wouldn’t change it for the world. In only a few short days, it became pretty obvious to me, how “comfortable” we’ve made ourselves in the routine of our daily lives. It was time for a change and Maddie definitely changed things up.
The kids have grown up so much this last week. Taking the dog out for little walks during cold and dark hours of early morning (without being asked). Being responsible for feeding her, playing with her, and still managing to get themselves ready for school. It’s almost as if, giving them more responsibility that wasn’t about them, made them more efficient. More responsible. They are over the moon happy, and the sounds of their belly laughs while they play with Maddie is enough to make my heart melt.
Maddie has brought new life to our house. We spend more time together as a family, playing and going for walks. Even though at times it is challenging, with the middle of the night whimpers, accidents on the floor, and a few minor arguments over whose turn it is to walk her (usually between me and my husband), Maddie has been the perfect addition to our family. And as it turns out, she has used her puppy charm to capture the heart of my husband. There is something about hugging and playing with a little puppy, that softens the heart.
It has only been one week, but a week it has been! I’m not suggesting that getting a puppy will magically solve all of life’s problems, but it has helped us close one chapter of our lives and look forward to a new adventure in the next. As we approach the holidays and the end of 2013, we are able to focus on something joyous, while honouring and remembering the missing that the many good-bye’s have left us. Life with Maddie has brought a sense of connectedness to our family; a gift. I believe, out of all the puppies we saw, Maddie chose us just as much as we chose her and we are all the better for it.