The watchful among you will have noticed I missed last week’s update… An 18-hour day will do that. A week ago yesterday, we drove 500 miles one direction to the breeder who had sold us Natasha four years ago to pick up KouKi and Santino. We got home at midnight, after hitting the road at 6AM. Because Kou is now only 9 weeks old, we’ve been having to deal with short hours of sleep and general discombobulation as she lets us know (or doesn’t!) about what she needs and when she needs it. It was lucky I had a short and slow week at work to be able to help settle in the two new ones as much as I did.
But let me tell you… There is no focusing on anything other than the adorability of new furbabies (and their messes). For anyone considering adding the love and joy they bring, please also remember:
- You will only sleep in no more than 4-hour chunks while they’re growing up;
- You will look like a prize fighter on the wrong end of the battle from the needle-sharp puppy teeth and claws;
- You will be cleaning up pee, poo, and vomit from off of all your most prized possessions;
- You will need to disrupt your social calendar to make sure someone is always available to take care of your babies;
- You will have to invest in baby gates, crates, toys, chews, and vet visits–and still be anxious about whether they will be as healthy and happy as you can help them be;
- You will watch all that preparation be tossed aside in favor of destroying your clothes, shoes, and furniture while they learn what’s right and appropriate to chew;
- You will lose your heart to each and every one of them, even after you’ve lost your favorite possessions to their growing pains.
All of this to say, when I saw the picture above, the caption resonated. For as tired as we are, we’re keeping up with the baby, and even Santino’s zoomies have so far been contained either in our back yard or the circular path through kitchen, dining room, living room, and entryway. They’re both OK with being in their crates while we’re around and they can see us, and they’ve learned to “settle” while we’re eating dinner, so they can become the same kind of refined Hunines as we’ve raised in the past. And the way Santino comes looking for me or hubs when we’ve left the room just melts my heart. Even Kou comes running, wiggling her whole body, when she’s at the end of the extendo-leash and done with her explorations, and is ready to rejoin her pack. The love they’ve brought us truly is a sacred reserve of energy, and has evolved our family in all the best ways. We’ve been taking regular breaks to play and laugh and walk–though most of the time I don’t have time to set up my app anymore to track exactly how much we’re doing. For the ones I did track, I know we walked at least 5.9 miles over four days, but I suspect that’s about half of the actual total. And it doesn’t even matter much to me what the numbers are, because it’s just a time of happiness. And counteracts the Disease of Being Busy, as so eloquently stated by Omid Safi and shared by a Facebook friend who struggles as much as any of the rest of us with not overcrowding her calendar.
Especially this week, when we were in the mad rush of preparation for family visitors for Thanksgiving, and as we’ve had to again take one of our own to the emergency room, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the number of responsibilities we’ve taken on and face the challenge of not over-scheduling. So I keep reminding myself, at least for me, some of those responsibilities will fall off my plate in the next few weeks. By the end of the year, I can return to the “normal” of “merely” working my day job and writing at night. But I have seen too many examples of burnout and breakdown in the past year not to take to heart that post on the disease of being busy. I’m thinking my goals are going to have to evolve to include just heart-to-heart sacred time, veg-out relaxation time, and actual unscheduled time. While I work that out, feel free to visit the other ROW80ers to see how they’re progressing on their goals.
And the fitting postscript for those of you who want the awwww moment of seeing our new pack’s configuration: