Thursday, January 31, 2008

I went to the hospital yesterday and saw Angel's brand new baby girl. She was not even twenty four hours old, pink all over, with little slits for eyes. Absolutely beautiful. When I held her she felt like a warm bag of rice, only soft all over. She made the most wonderful whimpering sounds.

I think once I am pregnant I will want to be pregnant with a little more steadfastness than I have now-my feelings about it change throughout any given day. I feel like I am just barely recovering from Ethan, and now to begin again? I know now the recovery time is about two years.

If you ever really recover. It's more like adjusting.

Which is not to say that babies aren't the most precious, mysterious things in the world.


Riley came home from her surgery yesterday and today she is not eating. I really want her to eat; she is so skinny and she'll look deathly if she loses weight. But she won't-not even soft beef stick treats. I'd feed her prime rib if she'd take it.

I feel more confident about her because Jen's husband, Sam, who is a dog person, came over last night and really liked her. He said that once she warms up a bit he thinks we will have a really good dog. Truman, on the other hand, bit his forarm and drew blood. He didn't say anything about Truman, but that's really the point.

Sam said it will take Riley a couple of weeks to relax and realize this is her home and we love her.

I hope so, because I think she is sad.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Riley #2

So third time's a charm. Joey and I drove out to Fallon to look at some adult dogs. The lady selling the dogs said she had two labs that would be perfect-older, happy, great with children. She just happened to leave out that they were both severely obese. However, she did have a little min pin/lab mix who was two years old. The lady said she was a type of dog that was always there but barely noticeable. Very quiet and not needy at all. Joey liked her immediately.

I was a little hesitant. She looked frail to me, the way she tried to bring in her hind legs, like she was scared and wanted to dart off (which brought back bad memories from that first poor puppy we brought home) but the lady said she was just cold.

The lady said we could take her home, try her out. If we didn't like her, she'd give us our twenty five dollars back.

She slept all the way home, has had no accidents in the house, sleeps silently in her crate, has not made one peep in the form of a whine or bark, and does not bite or nip, even when you stick your hand in her food bowl while she is eating. She likes to have the back of her ears touched, but not so much her body. She's a little skirmish, maybe a consequence of the new house and people, but maybe something more. We'll see. She sits sometimes, but always comes when you call her, even with her new name.

The lady said she had a name (Hallaha)but that the shelter had given it to her, so we could name her whatever we wanted.

"So what should we name her?" Joey asked as we drove out of her driveway.

"I donno."

"I still like Riley."

"Yeah...I still have the tag."

So what the heck. Riley number two.

It fits her and it's one less thing we have to buy for her.

She really is a sweetheart. And Joey loves her and she loves Joey, so much so that I have had pangs of jealousy when they snuggle cheek to cheek. I am not as sure how to approach her.

And of course our main concern was Ethan. So far, he has been totally OK with her, even feeding her from his little hand. He is not afraid of her because she isn't trying to smother him with kisses or use his foot for a bone. I can't believe it.

Thank you Jesus.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

The Tour.

Last night a couple of friends and I went to the jail for a tour. It was at midnight because that's when the guys said we would see all the action.
Two female deputies gave us the tour and they were both very nice, very easy going and funny. They cursed regularly, "That's the *&*%-head unit" but always with a smile on their face.
The place is HUGE and all very similar: halls, housing units, halls, and halls. White cement blocks made up the walls and the floor was painted gray cement. The smell varied from hall to hall but overall it was very cafeteria foodish, very make you barfish. After about twenty minutes I was ready to be done; too bad we only had an hour and twenty minutes more to go.
Most of the inmates were locked down and sleeping. Their housing unites were nicer than I expected-very clean and very spacious. There was a rack of library books in each one, a big screen TV, and tables with lots of games. The railings and borders of the housing units were painted a disgusting eighties mauve pink; I've read pink is supposed to be a very calming, soothing color.
The female units were exactly like the males save one overflow area out back that looked like a circus tent. When we went inside the smell about knocked me over it was so stale, so in need of a gallon of Fabreez. It was dim and I saw girls in grey sweats and blue t-shirts everywhere, with orange plastic slip-on shoes. It looked like summer camp. Bunks lined the walls, girls were playing cards at tables, about five of them were sitting next to each other cuddled under blankets watching a movie. Some girls were sleeping, some reading. Most were young, about my age, and there was a real air of kick-backness, like they all liked being there. They smiled at us and asked one of the tour deputies when she was working out there next, and would she please bring that one movie? "Oh wait," she said. "Number 42 over there said she can't watch that one cus it gives her nightmares!" And then she giggled and laughed with the girl next to her, like they were standing in their high school hallway.
When we got to Joey's unit they had "workers" in grey striped uniforms just like you see in the old movies buffing and polishing the floor. Joey looked relaxed and at ease; he smiled easily and I fell in love with him again.
Of course we didn't make any direct eye contact or show any signs of our relationship, because the inmates can't know.
For whatever they've done the inmates aren't trusted while they are in jail, and they have to endure having girls like us come through and watch them like they are animals in the zoo. Some looked very uncomfortable when they saw us, with darty eyes and pursed lips; others smiled when they knew they could get away with it, happy for some distraction and different scenery from all the cement and pink railings. At one point I happened to glance at the window in a cell's door as I passed and like a puppet this face dropped out of nowhere: dark, mischievous and sparkling eyes and a huge smile with yellow and missing teeth. I about pooped my pants. He got yelled at by the deputy behind me.
On a different note the sun is out today, melting the snow. It's warm and very bright and I had forgotten how wonderful it is.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Doctors Make me Sick.

So I got up early and tore Ethan out of his nice comfy bed, plopped him in a bath and bathed him super-duper fast, being as careful as I could to not get water and soap in his eyes but we were on a schedule-and we were late-threw him in some clothes and into the car and then fought traffic to get to our darn appointment on time. I drove around a couple of parking lots before I finally found the right address and then we walked through those glass doors right at 9:15.
I filled out all of the paper work while keeping my eye on Ethan so he wouldn't steal other kids toys and they wouldn't steal his, and when I gave the very nice lady behind the counter my insurance card I said, "It should go to our deductible," because we have fairly cheap insurance (we're still talking hundreds of wasted dollars a year) but that means we have to pay for everything until we meet our six thousand dollar deductible. I love insurance.
So then we waited. Ethan played with the one dumb puzzle they had and rocked back and forth on this neon green thing that was obviously busted, missing parts, grossly dirty and should have been in the dumpster out back.
But maybe I am getting a head of myself.
When we had Ethan, AT HOME (gasp, catch your breath, lie down if you need to) no pediatrician in Reno would touch him with a ten foot pole because he didn't get a vitamin K shot, this incredibly important shot that keeps children's brain from bleeding to death. Ethan didn't bleed to death but I guess he was a really really rare case.
Anyway, my mom made a few phone calls and I finally got him in with my childhood pediatrician after we vowed to not to be those parents who give grief about vaccinations. We promised we would do every single one without so much as a peep.
At this point I was desperate. After being rejected by so many pediatricians, I thought something must be wrong with Ethan, and would some person in a white jacket just please look at him. Please.
So we agreed to the vaccination thing.
But now that we are thinking of getting pregnant and I want to use a midwife again, I thought, you know what? I want a doctor who I can actually be honest with. (I have thrown out, unfilled, every prescription Dr. D has written for Ethan). I want a doctor who thinks a little bit more like me, that antibiotics and vaccines used IN MODERATION are great but are scary used otherwise.
So I was trying a new doctor today. One that doesn't beat you if you don't give your children vaccines, one that won't gave a damn, or a dirty look, if you tell them you are going to use a midwife.
So anyway, Ethan was rocking on that green busted piece of junk and thirty minutes later they called us back. I wasn't mad or angry or impatient at this point. OK, maybe I was on the verge of impatient.
Now, forty minutes later, after sitting in a room that had one more dumb puzzle, a bio hazard trash can, and locked cabinets for Ethan to play with, I was impatient. I was fuming. I was shaking.
I mean, it sounds like I was overreacting. But I was PAYING for this. A hundred dollars to meet the doctor.
And then I thought, what the heck am I doing? Ethan is not sick. Why am I here? And I put our jackets on and told the young girls in the cute cartoon scrubs at the the desk that we were going home.
When I got home I thought well, we will stay with Dr. D. So I called her office to get his two year old "Well Visit" appointment and they were closed. On a Friday. They are also closed EVERY Thursday, and every other Wednesday. Nice. Looks like Ethan has like two good days to be sick on otherwise we are screwed.
And this is what I have realized: I am not a doctor person unless I am sick. And I am not going to take Ethan to a doctor unless he is sick. What is up with a "Well Visit"?
Something is seriously twisted.

Friday, 8am.

I went to Walmart yesterday and bought some tangerines and apples. Also some peppers, in red, yellow and green because I have read they are so good at eliminateing all those free radicals in my body that have a high potential to cause cancer. I mostly bought fruit and veggies and then of course eggs and milk. It felt good. Of course I don't shop like that regularly, but I like to pretend like I do.

Ethan goes to the doctor today. He hasn't been since June and I am really proud of that, like it's all my care, my excellent mothering skills. I guess I like to pretend about that too.

Anyway, it's the weekend, Joey is back at work, life goes on. I am still looking at older dogs, ones that won't dissrupt our life quite so much, and have found three potentials. But I am going about it with a lot more care, a lot more caution. I think that is what happens when you've had your heart broken.

And, it snowed once again. It's snowed everyday now for like five days straight. Thankfully just a dusting, just small enough you can (Joey can) sweep it off the driveway and walkways.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Expanded Time.

For some reason this morning I can't believe it is only Wednesday. Usually Joey's days off disappear like water vapor but this week I'm thinking, "We still have one more day!" He is shoveling snow because, yes, it snowed again. Living where we do doesn't help because the snow from the last storm never melts before the new snow comes. It makes for some really disgusting muddy snow piles and perpetually icy driveways.
One thing that has been good since we gave Truman back is that we have been able to hang out with friends a ton. I think this is one of the reasons Joey's days off feel longer, because we are actually together, doing fun things. Last night we went to Brad and Kelly's, tonight Jen and Sam's. She is making meatloaf baked in a Pillsbury flaky croissant dough roll.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

A White Day.

It's quiet today, and very white. There is snow on the ground, and the sky is covered in clouds. I slept in until eight-thirty, until Ethan was yelling from his bed, "Ma-ma! Ma-ma!" Joey stayed still while I got up, put the incredibly needed contacts in, and went into Ethan's bedroom.
I went to Resistance and even there the class was going on around me but inside of myself everything was quiet and still, a little sad.
I feel like I just broke up with a boyfriend. When a love song comes on the radio (this is so pathetic) I think of Truman. Gosh I am embarrassed to write that.
Anyway, there is so many things I can do now, like concentrate on getting certified for group exercise and keeping my house clean and nice to be in, and making Joey and Ethan good food.
I can do whatever I want.
We went to the mall last night to walk around and I bought some BEE-U-TI-FULL black boots for 26 bucks, regularly 75. I can't wait to wear them with a skirt or dress.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Red Feelings, Purple Feelings, and Everything in Between.

I woke up this morning and thought of Truman and how my kitchen was empty. That I didn't have to rush to get up before he did one more pee or little hill of poop on my floor. That I don't have to constantly remove him from chewing on my computer cord as I write, that I didn't have to immediately light three candles to cover his stale, puppy smell. You'd think all this would make me immeasurably happy but instead my chest feels heavy, like some big hard boulder is laying on it, smashing me.
Ethan is relaxed for the first time in two weeks sitting in his high chair in the kitchen because Truman is not here. He is eating his "frozens", ie frozen blueberries, intermittently asking me to sing him "Away in the Manger".
Joey has gone shooting but before he left I made him scrambled eggs, an extra white and preservative filled bagel with whipped cream cheese, and coffee. He was happy when he left.
Maybe if Truman were here I wouldn't have done that, I would still have been trying to clean up all his little ponds of pee.
I am a wife first, a mother second. With Truman I was a puppy owner first, a mother second, and a wife if I had enough energy, which I never did. My energy stopped about half-way into a story with Ethan, or in the middle of changing his diaper. Truman got all of me, Ethan got half, and Joey nothing but my weariness, my frustration, my attitude.
We went out last night and it was so fun. I had my first martini. Well I actually tried two but the first one I tried tasted like medicine and dirt. I can remember everything from what I talked to Sarah about to the taste of the greasy, crunchy, yum yum yummy onion rings to the plump waitress asking for my ID, but when we got up to leave I could not feel my legs and I felt very warm. Joey had to boost my bootie up into Ken's new truck because of the leg issues but by the time we got back to the house I could feel my legs again.
Ethan had his two year birthday last night too. We had all the family over and a couple of friends.
It was really wonderful. Crowded, but wonderful. And when I brought the cake with two little candles dancing in the air and started to sing "Happy Birthday" Ethan stopped playing with his new tractor and got very attentive. He looked at me with that cake and then around at all his family singing to him like a huge, horrible choir and then he started to smile. He knew the cake and the singing were for him, and you could see he was loving it. When we finished the song I told him, "Blow out the candles!" and he did. Then he started jumping up and down in the most ungraceful way ever, more like he was stomping grapes, and clapping. And of course we didn't have the camera or the video camera out.
It was an emotion filled day yesterday. If feelings were a rainbow, I went through all of the colors, and I felt more alive than I usually do.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

The hardest Lesson ever.

I can't believe I am sitting here writing this post. Truman goes back today.
Last night Jen was over and I don't know how it even came up but all of a sudden she's saying, "I think this dog has to go back."
And sometimes I see the reasons so clearly, and then sometimes I don't see them at all; all I see is Truman lying in the sun.
I called Joey at 12:48 am to see what he thought, clinging with the tiniest bit of hope that he would say no, we can work the issues out. That I was over-reacting.
Of course, he said he wasn't angry at all, not about the money, not about anything. After I told him why I thought we had to give Truman back I tried to explain to him why we should keep him.
But those reasons just weren't strong enough to overpower the fact that deep in his heart, Joey knows I am not a pitbull owner.
Maybe if I didn't have Ethan, but I do, and he comes first.
These lessons are so hard and for some reason they just keep getting harder. I thought by now I would be done learning lessons. Ha.
I see my weaknesses so clearly; my impulsive, emotionally driven nature that over and over and over has made our life hard and at times, like today, completely heart breaking.
Good Lord did I need this to see my need for my husband's logical, future-orientated mind? I usually am so annoyed with that aspect of him but if I would have listened to him for three seconds maybe my throat wouldn't feel like someone is strangling it right now, maybe I wouldn't have to fight the shame.
Live and Learn. And Cry. And Lose Money. And Cry.
I know this is for our family, for Ethan, for Joey, for me. Jen reminded me of all the money I actually am saving by giving him back, because sometimes it's hard for me to get over the money issue and it would be just like me to keep the dog because we've already dropped a grand into him.
But that is stupid.
O lord.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

No Wussies.

Today I feel like I am very quietly and calming going insane. Fifteen minutes ago I reached in to take Ethan out his high chair and into time out for the forty fifth billion trillion time this morning and I said, "Ethan, we don't throw our food. We ask with a happy heart to be excused"-all in the most patient, controlled voice imaginable but on the inside I felt like a person I have never felt like before. Likes some crazy woman who is unstable and unpredictable-downright crazy.
Children-and puppies-bring this wacko out in me.
My voice gets so soft and controlled when I am dealing with Ethan, even soothing-it's really creepy. He's sleeping now and I feel like my sanity is slowly returning. Truman is outside taking a sun bath and and biting at imaginary foes in the the air.
Last night I was thinking and this is what I came up with:
Marriage is not for wussies.
Children are not for wussies.
And puppies are not for wussies.
The Lord is gracious to me through all of this. Like I said in my last post, I feel defeated. Weak and unable to "be on top" of both Truman and Ethan. But this morning I was outside with Truman. Sasha, another pitbull mix next store, was high up on the hill in her backyard looking down on us and growling and barking, tail straight in the air. I tried to be sweet with her and tell her it's ok, everything is ok, all in that sweet, soothing voice I use, but she just kept on barking and growling. I wondered if she could clear the fence if she got enough of a head start. Then I said in my new, alpha voice, "Sasha, NO!" and she barked one more time and then went down the hill so we couldn't see her anymore.
I felt like Arnold in The Terminator.
It was a small victory but I needed it desperately.
Also, when I came back inside my older sister Deana had called and said she needed prayer for patience with Andrew. Amen and Amen.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Staying on Top.

As if you haven't seen enough of him...
I am at work. I haven't been here for two weeks. I am bored, there is a man here who won't leave and won't stop talking, and I have a headache from the chai I just finished. Fun times here in the Welcome Center.

I wonder what Trumando is up to-probably gnawing my dining room table chairs to bits. I bought Bitter Yuck and that seems to be helping; heck I accidentally got some on my fingers and then in my mouth and I about puked. The taste lingers, too. Poor Truman.

I took him on a walk around the block today and he did very well, meaning that he actually walked. I had to pick him up at the busy street because he just FREAKS OUT when he sees or hears a car whizzing by and I carried him the rest of the way home saying, "Good dog Truman. You did such a good job on your walk today. Good boy!" He nuzzled his snout between my neck and shoulders like it was all very traumatizing.

He is the sweet heart of all sweet hearts when he is tired or scared.

I took him over to Angel and Logan's yesterday because Joey is a little paranoid about his constant desire to bite everything in sight and I guess I have to admit I have been intimidated when he crouches down and then pounces on you like he is a lion and you are poor, helpless zebra meat. All the books say that you must distract them with a toy they can chew on, never yell, never hit--you will make them scared of you and bring out more aggression. But Angel and Logan take a different approach with their dogs, one that requires you to get on top of the dog and then hold it's head down and look them right in the eyes and say, "No bite!" in a very assertive, barking-like way until the dog submits.

Angel does this very well and I am trying really hard.

In other news, Ethan is now officially two in all of his whiny, melt-down glory. I feel out of control-I am not good at this laying-down-the-law stuff. Joey tells me he needs me to "be on top of it." I feel defeated. By both of them, Truman and Ethan, my two-little-asserting-their-wills-toddlers. Also, Ethan is obsessed with Veggie Tales now.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Four Years: Forever.

Today is our anniversary. Four years. It seems like forever, both in the best and the worst ways. Joey is home to me; I can't imagine 'me' without 'him'; yet looking back these years have been long. Four long years of growing up fast and hard. We were married when we were twenty and saying "I do" was like stepping on an express train that has yet to slow down.
Sometimes I like the speed, the unexpectedness, but most of the time the constant motion leaves me feeling weasy and tired.
And ultimately overwhelmingly grateful because Joey is such an incredible man to go through life with me.
I sneak glances at this man in the car or while we are eating-glances that if he caught me would cause some awkwardness which I always think is weird when you are married, but whatever-and I always think, "Man, he is hot." And it is a deeper hot than I ever could have imagined when we were dating, a hot that encompasses a man who I now know fights for his family like Russel Crowe in Cinderella Man: with everything.
We are going to the Olive Garden. I'm looking forward to getting dressed up, and drinking wine which I finally can finish a glass of.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Grace. Home.

It Bloomed!! I saved this plant from the give-away-table in Married Student Housing's laundry room and have cared for the darn thing for four years without a bloom. At one point it was in the garbage because I thought it was dead, but then I pulled it out and decided to try one more time.
I really love plants but feel absolutely useless in whether they live or die. And when something like this happens, I am reminded of God's grace in such a poignant way. We plant, we water, but God dictates growth. Hallelujah.

I took a nap with the Trumiester this afternoon. It reminded me of home, of growing up, of napping on the couch as a teenager with my cat Boots all up in my face. I am growing more and more attached to the smell of his skin and like with Ethan, every time I pick him up I bury my nose in his head, taking it all in.

Monday, January 14, 2008


I remember when I very first saw you. I thought you were very pulled together, if you know what I mean.
I remember your peach jammies and your light brown hair in curlers. You sitting on your bed and talking with an endless smile to one of your many boyfriends.
I remember your brown eyes, like shiny, precious stones.
I remember you yelling at me because I couldn't speak your language and I would pester you constantly to help me. I'd argue with you about how to say something, confident you didn't understand what I wanted to say. Of course, you were always right-there aren't direct translations for so many things. It took me months to accept this.
I remember your smile, your energy, when you came bounding into the dinning room with a pair of tiny white shorts on. "They fit!" you said as you lifted your hands in the air and twirled in a circle. It surprised me weight mattered that much to you.
I remember your hands, graceful and brown. Your middle fingers short as your pinkies, but somehow the deformity made you more feminine, more alluring.
I remember you playing the piano. I think you hated it.
I remember wondering why you were so rude to me. Your mom said you were jealous.
I remember later, after I had moved out, coming back and finding you in your room. You seemed annoyed to see me, but in a sisterly way that made me stay. I told you my problem; you listened but didn't say much.
I remember you asking me to play the guitar and sing, "The Nails in Your Hands" over and over and over.
I remember talking to you for the last time on the phone. I can't remember if you said you had a boyfriend or not.
And then I remember sliding down my bedroom wall when they called to tell me you had died. I sat on the floor and didn't want them to hang up, but they did eventually, after they were sure I wasn't alone.

Life With Truman.

Whose licking my toes?

Ethan thought these boots were just his style.

Joey's nemesis.

My cuddle bug that I sometimes want to kick into the wall. BUT-he is pooping outside almost always. I am so proud. Pee is a completely different story.
We are adjusting. Even Joey, despite the look on his face up there. He looks like he is holding a pig he is about to roast.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Life Today.

This dog is driving me nuts this morning. I feel like throwing him out the slider and slamming the door. He won't stop going after my feet, my robe tie. I feel guilty right now like a mother who uses ice cream or TV to get her child to shut up-I can't stop giving him treats. They are the only thing that keeps him occupied for five minutes.
He likes to be outside but we have at least two spots in our fence that he could wiggle right under. So if I put him outside I have to be out there with him, freezing. Finally he seems to have calmed down; I gave him a really big treat that is supposed to help his breath and clean his teeth. He desperately needs help with his breath.
My friend Jen came over again last night and said to me, "Let's go out," just as I was putting on the water for tea. Out? What?
"Ok..."I wasn't sure how all of this was going to work out with a two year old but I decided to try. Jen put Ethan's jacket on him and we were off.
We went to Red Robin and sat in a booth with no one behind us so Ethan couldn't play with strangers' hair or throw french fries in their laps. He stood the whole time and loved Jen's strawberry lemonade, which she ended up giving to him. She fed him the strawberries off the red straw.
We went to Bed Bath and Beyond and looked at flannel sheets and smelled candles. Ethan loves to smell candles. As I carried him back to the car, his little doughy hands smelled like spiced pumpkin and apples.
Then we went to Ross and browsed some more. Jen was looking for some king size pillows for her new bed. As we were testing out all the different brands, the pillows slipped off the shelf. You know how slippery they can be in those plastic covers? Anyway, we had a mound of pillows on the floor and a sales woman walked by and looked at us like we were ten years old and in her make-up or something. Then she just stood there. Jen said, "We're making a mess, aren't we," and the lady nodded.
I was so annoyed I almost started throwing pillows at her. I told her not to worry, that we would clean them up, and she nodded and walked off.
People sometimes.
Anyway, other than the pillow incident the night was wonderful. Food, lemonade, shopping. And most importantly, someone who doesn't have kids who acts like she does, making it easy as pie for Ethan and I to hang out with her anytime, anywhere. She brushed his teeth last night for gosh sakes.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

The hum of the refridgerator.

We got a big snow storm this weekend. I got Ethan all decked out in the appropriate gear so that he could go outside with me to take the trash out. I don't have snow clothes because they are expensive and I'd rather stay inside. So I was in my bathrobe. But the first thing Ethan does is jump right into the snow. I forget how carefree toddlers are. He didn't even have gloves on. Then as we walked around the house he insisted on walking in the snow drifts instead of the paths. I would have liked to have stayed out there longer with him but I was freezing my rear off and his red fingers looked like glow worms.
Hallelujah. Truman just put his paw on the slider and so I let him outside. He did the normal five minute dog sniff before finding just the right spot and then pooped. All on his own. Of course then he was so proud of himself because I was cheering him on like crazy that he stepped right in it as he wiggled his way over to me. Whatever. Progress is progress. Oh and then when we came inside and I gave him a treat he peed because he was so excited. But I think we are making real headway here.
***I decided to take Truman on his first real walk because they say pit bulls need ALOT of exercise and Truman is rather rambunctious today. However,I didn't realize you have to train puppies to walk too for gosh sakes. He just sits there and looks at you like, "What?" When he can get it in his mouth he chews on the the leash. So I carried him all the way to the end of our street because the sidewalk hadn't been cleared of snow. I finally got him on a path and he didn't want to move. Then a big tuck drove by and Truman darted under my legs utterly terrified. I explained to him cars are kind of like humongous dogs.
But after the truck he was finished. He was shivering from the cold and from the truck scare so I carried him all the way back home. He was relieved to be inside his kitchen again and is now sleeping.
Joey and Ethan are sleeping too. It's quiet.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Puppy love.

So I've been jotting down all these cute things Truman does so that I can remember to write them in this blog but when I sit down they all seem quite irrelevant to the overwhelming feeling of THIS IS HARD. In fact I can't remember a time in my life that has been harder. Having a baby everyone feels sorry for you and offers to help and even gives you presents. Going to college and working and having a two year old everyone shakes their head in respect and offers to babysit. Having a puppy, on the other hand, people look at you with that smile that says, "I told you so."
And they did. Everyone tried to warn me and I blew them all off, which is a very human thing to do when other humans are trying to help you avoid a potentially hazardous situation. Oh no, we say. Not me.
Whatever. Of course it will be the same with you, Ding Dong!
I feel like Joey is about to snap. I feel like our marriage is about to snap. And I am definitely about to snap.
Ethan, however, compared to Joey and me, has been the most angelic thing since we got Truman and it's not because he likes the dog. He just seems to not worry about sticky linoleum from pee and training a pitpull to be nice when all he wants to do is bite bite bite and stuff like that. I realize how easy life has become with Ethan, how normal, and how it took me two years to get used to having him around.
God I pray puppies don't take as long as children to get used to.
It's not all bad for me. I still get cuddle time with Truman on the couch or when I'm in the chair in the kitchen he puts his little paw on my leg and asks with his most beautiful blue eyes, "Up, please?"
But Joey for some reason or another just gets his toes chewed on. Although last night Truman did sleep curled up in Joey's armpit, giving him a lick every now and then. Joey said he didn't get to sleep until one and then he woke up to Truman gnawing on his leg.
But I really can't tell you how hard this has been. People say your first year of marriage is tough-that was like a Hawaii vacation where everything goes right compared to our life here since Thursday.
I want this dog-I feel like Joey gave in to me wanting this dog but he didn't want it.
Love is never an easy thing, least of all I am learning, puppy love. Puppy love takes more patience, more forgiveness, more hope, than I have ever had to give before-not just to Truman, but to my husband.
I don't know why it seems like a shock as severe as jumping into an Antarctic pool that Joey and I are completely different in so many respects. Especially in our brains. Sometimes I think the only thing Joey and I have in common is the color of our skin, and even that varies.

Monday, January 7, 2008

Meet Truman.

Things have been a little tense around here, what with the new puppy, a new two year old, a major snowstorm, and me with the flu. Joey is already talking about ulcers and we've had Truman ('faithful man') for two days now.
I feel like I just had a baby.
Ethan doesn't really want to have anything to do with Truman because Truman thinks Ethan's legs are the perfect chew toy. Ethan will come into the kitchen and crawl right into Truman's kennel and shut the door so Truman can't get to him. The first picture up there was a rare sighting of them together and it last oh, about two seconds.
I have so much more to say about the little fellow. Maybe when he sleeps I will get a chance. Now it's time to check for pee puddles.

Friday, January 4, 2008

Unwavering Protector.

That is what 'Liam' means and that is what I am going to suggest we name out new little puppy who we put a deposit on yesterday. I think 'Liam' is perfect because it has a softness to it too and supposedly he is the most cuddly one, although all five of them seemed to want to burrow into you somehow.
I can't wait to post a picture of his most adorable face.
At one point he started chewing on Ethan's pants and when I tried to get him off his tiny razor teeth caught my cuticle and I bled all the way home. But I forgave him.
When I told the lady I didn't know how to choose one because they were all so dang cute, she said, "I always let the puppy choose me." And I said, somewhat stupidly, "How?" And she said, "Just call them and see which one comes."
So I did and he waddled over and that was it.
He is like a small lion.

Thursday, January 3, 2008


Well, we drove to Doyle last night and picked up a puppy. And now it's a quarter to seven the next morning and Joey is driving her back to Doyle to give her back.
We couldn't really see that well last night because it was so dark but the poor thing is almost starved. Her ribs stuck out like a small rack of pork ribs you can pick up at Raley's. She sat on my lap the thirty minute ride home, warm and still. She barely moved. When we got her home she threw up and had diarrhea everywhere. And then after worrying about her all night, thinking I'd find her small, brown dead body on my kitchen floor this morning, when I did go to the kitchen she didn't even lift her head, but her dark eyes were open.
Every time I looked at her my heart broke and I got very frustrated we paid two hundred dollars for her.
We had bought a collar for her and a name tag in the shape of a little pink heart that said Riley on it. She wore it all night but this morning I took it off of her. I wish I would have let her keep it.
This is all so crazy I am sitting here sobbing.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Rare Responsibility.

I called the tiger man and said we couldn't come see the puppy. It was heartbreaking. I was already dreaming about looking into those green eyes (he told me the puppy had green eyes). But I had to be smart and responsible and logical for a rare moment and admit that a potentially eighty or ninety pound pitbull might not be the best dog for our family. Even with a name like Tozer.
Joey and I had talked and we want a female, for size and maybe temperament reasons.
After I called and let tiger man know we wouldn't be coming to see the puppy, I told Joey, "That was really hard for me to do." And then a couple minutes later, "I think that was the hardest thing I have had to do in a while." And then again in the car on the way to dinner, "That was really hard. " He never really responded, just kept driving. I think we both wanted to slam each other's head into the dashboard.
But I feel better about it now. I have to go about this in a logical, responsible way, otherwise our marriage could suffer detrimentally. I have to go about it with patience for Joey. He is not ready for his grass to die from poop.