I imagine that bringing our new puppy, Rilo, into our home is giving us the tiniest taste of what parenthood will be like. It's been a long and difficult three days. I feel like we've had a rambunctious toddler transplanted into our household without the benefit of a couple of years together to establish some form of working communication. Since she arrived, the conversation between John and I has pretty much been limited to the following:
- strategies for getting the puppy to stop barking or crying
- the best way to house-train the puppy
- the last time the puppy pooped or peed
- how to go about the routine tasks of living while managing the puppy
- how to puppy-proof the house and keep the puppy from chewing everything in sight
We're both exhausted. It seems that everything else in our lives has stopped. I think we're both a little ashamed to admit it, but more than once, we've discussed whether or not we are up to it, whether we should take her back to the rescue organization. We've asked ourselves how we'll ever be parents, if we're really cut out for this.
Rilo isn't a particularly bad puppy. She's just a puppy. In fact, she's a really cute puppy. I think she's very smart, and a fast learner. She gets along well with the dogs next door and seems completely uninterested in devouring our felines. I imagine that in a few weeks, we'll look back and be amazed at how far she's come in such a short time. I look forward to when she is a bit bigger and we can take her for walks and to the dog park and out on other adventures.
At the same time, I want to enjoy these times with her, while she is still small and cuddly and only 8 pounds. I enjoy her silliness, her curiosity. It makes me feel all fuzzy to see how excited she gets to see me.
It's been tough, but I imagine that this is really good practice for what lies ahead.