It’s been a wild couple of years, hasn’t it? This morning, when we were both struggling to get through the thick, knee-high snow drifts, and I eventually just dropped your leash to make it easier for both of us, it really hit me how far we both have come. Not only did I trust you to stay with me but I actually enjoyed myself. It’s been a long time since I considered walking you a giant chore. I will admit I used to. Living with you is work. You have to know that. You are not always a joy. Sometimes I think you delight in being contrary. Perhaps The Cat has taught you a few things about how to drive me the most insane. Nevertheless, there have always been moments of light. Like right now, for instance. Since you are sleeping, and all. I think I like you best when you are asleep.
I’m joking. Mostly.
In so many ways we are not a good fit for each other. You are the ultimate jock dog. Just look at your muscles! I am the ultimate bookworm. The two don’t go together well. The only sport I excel at completely terrifies you. It doesn’t seem right to have all this water in our backyard and a dog who hates to swim. What’s up with that? Do you not see how lucky you are? If you’d just get over this tiny fear, you could be a dock dog champion! Think of the ribbons! Think of the glory!
I know. It’s not about the ribbons or the glory. If I ever get a big head I know you will be around to knock it back down. You are nothing if not humbling. Just when I am starting to feel confident about my training abilities, you will do something so bizarre, like act as if you’ve never seen a jump before, that will prove I still have a long way to go. You are nothing if not surprising. Life with you is never boring.
I guess that’s a good thing.
And you do have some good points. I don’t go a day without laughing at something you’ve done. In fact, I rarely make it to seven in the morning without emitting a giggle or two. You’ve given me something to focus on, something of which I can be proud. Truly, you are what gets me out of bed every morning at five-thirty. A time that did not exist in my world before. Because of you I have seen more sunrises and sunsets in the last two years than I have in my entire life. There is also the matter of your drive. You never hesitate to try something new. No matter what the activity you are on board one hundred percent. I realise how special that is and I don’t take it for granted. You take on everything with so much courage and verve. It’s amazing to watch. Yes, you are insane. But I kind of am too. The title of this blog fits for so many reasons. I rescued a wacky mutt and a wacky mutt rescued me in return. We put up with each other’s quirks. Though you are probably a lot more patient than I am. I owe you one.
How about this? I promise to have a looser hand with the cookies and to gripe less about your failings if you promise to cut us some slack. When the inevitable question arises, to bark or not to bark, can you do me a favour and choose not to bark? At least choose it more often? That would be great. Our neighbours are only so understanding. Getting evicted isn’t really part of my five-year-plan.
Speaking of five-year-plans… Do you see those weave poles on the other side of the room? It would be just stellar if…
So I think we have a deal. I will give you more stinky treats, more belly rubs, and more attention, and you will try to focus a bit more. It would also be great if you would be a little more understanding. If not with me than with the PH. He doesn’t always remember all the rules. Sometimes he forgets to pay attention to strangers and doesn’t see that evil person walking by our house. Maybe you could remind him in a gentler way so he wouldn’t feel so bad? I would appreciate it and I know he would too. We’re both just silly humans, after all. You can’t expect us to be perfect all the time.
One last thing. I want to say thanks. I know I am not your ideal owner. I’m new at this. I screw up a lot. Sometimes I worry I am not good enough for a dog like you. Everyone says how awesome you are, how talented, how you could go all the way to the top. I am not so sure I am the person to take you there. But you don’t seem to care. Regardless of what mistakes I make, you seem to find a way to have fun. And you always come back.
Thanks for the life lessons, Sheevs. Our future dogs thank you as well. We may not be perfectly matched, but I think we’re going to be all right.
Lots of love,
The Woman With the Food in Her Pocket