Is it Friday yet???? I am not even sure how to sum up the past few days. I love the movie “Parenthood”. Steve Martin’s character complains about how complicated and messy life is when you are a parent. His grandmother walks in and says,
“You know, when I was nineteen, Grandpa took me on a roller coaster. Up, down, up, down. Oh, what a ride! I always wanted to go again. You know, it was just so interesting to me that a ride could make me so frightened, so scared, so sick, so excited, and so thrilled all together! Some didn’t like it. They went on the merry-go-round. That just goes around. Nothing. I like the roller coaster. You get more out of it.”
I like the roller coaster as well…most of the time. This week has been a wild ride. My children have wanted a dog for a long time. We had a wonderful dog who died three years ago when he was 15. I have always toyed with the idea of getting a new one, but there have been so many changes and adjustments that I wanted to wait until we were settled in a home. So it seems as if we finally came to the place in life where we were ready to get a dog. The kids and I went to the animal shelter to see what we could find. We were told that there was a sweet yellow lab that was just found and seemed to have a sweet disposition. She had just been spayed so we couldn’t see her for a few more days. If we wanted they would call us when she was ready so we could meet her and decide.
Last Wednesday I got the call that she was ready and I went by myself to see her. She was beautiful, playful, sweet and HOUSEBROKEN! It was as if she was made for our family. I adopted her and took her home to surprise the kids. They named her Izzie and everyone was happy. Two days later this happy energetic dog became lethargic and started coughing. She had not eaten much since coming to the house, but I thought maybe it was just nerves from adjusting to a new home. On Monday I took her to the vet. She was very sick and the vet said she needed to be put to sleep. He said she had probably been sick when the shelter found her. It broke my heart. I wasn’t expecting to have fallen in love so quickly with the dog. The children cried, to deal with their sadness some made pictures, some wrote notes. We put them in the backyard in a pot on the back patio and planted a flower in it for Izzie. Seeing the children cry I wondered why did we find this beautiful dog to become a part of our family, only to have her taken away a few days later. When we first got the dog, Daly had made the comment that Nana would have loved her. Now he says Izzie is in heaven with Nana, and he thinks the reason we found her was so that she could meet all of Nana’s babies so when she got to heaven and saw Nana she could tell her how we are doing. The thought of that made me smile.
Kids are amazing and resilient. Life goes on. Yesterday, in typical mommy form, I got the kids off to school, went to work, picked them up, made a great dinner, cleaned the kitchen, did two loads of laundry, vacuumed, and even had a minute to touch up my makeup and brush my hair. I smiled looking at my outfit. I had managed to wear a pretty black skirt and sweater all day, accomplish all of the mommy duties, and still had it on without any smudges. I do have it together!!!! I can handle six kids, our dog dying, homework, tears, meals, housework, deadlines, etc. and still look nice!
I loaded up the car for volleyball, beaming because we were even going to make it to practice on time to meet Moira’s coach and team. We get to the recreation center, the kids are getting out of the car, I reach under my seat to grab my shoes….and THEY WEREN’T THERE!!! I always kick my heels off before I drive and on this ONE day I took them inside. Seriously!!!)&#*&#)& I had to go into the gym all dressed up with no shoes on. The kids were all laughing and Moira proudly announces to her coach, “this is my mom, she forgot her shoes”.
Most of us have chosen to ride the roller coaster. It is filled with ups and downs, some scary and some exhilarating. But the truth is, at least for me, I would choose that any day over the Merry-Go-Round. Wouldn’t you?