While I scrubbed the bathroom floor on one of those Sundays that necessitated a thorough house cleaning, I heard the front door open, followed by my then-fiance’s voice. “Don’t be mad!”
Oh, no. He bought a pickup. (We’d been weighing the idea of getting a cheap-o pickup truck to help with house remodeling projects, to take camping, and to provide further proof that we do indeed live in Idaho.)
I dropped my rag in the bucket, pulled myself up from the half-slick floor, and hurried down the hallway.
In his arms was a chubby, brown puppy.
The train of thoughts in my head went something like this: What a realistic-looking stuffed animal. Who’s dog is that? Is this a joke? Are you f***ing kidding me? OMG, how adorable. Love.
I named this chocolate lab Ginny and the madness began.
(To be fair to my now-husband, we’d been discussing the possibility of getting ourselves another dog, something female and lab-esque, within the near future. We already had one dog, and if we were going to get a pickup and continue to live in Idaho, might as well throw another dog in the truck bed, right? I was under the impression that we’d hold off on picking out a puppy for a few months. Ha.)
Ginny is still a puppy, and even when she’ll no longer be a puppy, her Labrador retriever blood will make her one hyperactive pain-in-the-ass–spoken from the experience of someone who grew up with pain-in-the-ass labs. She’ll need the exercise and discipline we’re instilling as habits now. In addition to that work, puppy life requires more supervision than I’d ever anticipated. Let me note for reference that we do not have any human children.
All this to say that my creative output has taken a significant hit this summer. I’ve drafted some shorter pieces, journaled, took some notes on ideas ping-ponging through my head… and that’s about it. Nothing submitted, nothing line edited, nothing moving past a terrible rough draft.
I’ve learned to accept this because this stage–puppy time–won’t last forever. Someday soon I’ll be able to take Ginny for a run so to burn as much energy as possible, watch her collapse onto her dog bed and begin to dream of chasing squirrels, and sneak off to my office to do some damn work. Today is not someday. Today she needs my attention so that she doesn’t smother the cat during a now-unequally-weighted wrestling match, or gnaw on the living room area rug, or chomp on a lamp’s power cord, or chew on my slippers, etc.
Until someday comes, I’ll keep doing what I’m doing.