Last week with the extra girls around, I had a pretty good time being the "fun" aunt. No, I didn't let them get away with anything they wouldn't do at home. I'm very consistent with my behavior expectations, even to my nieces and nephews. I just find it is SO much easier to do nice things for kids when you expect them to be nice in return. Kids will always rise to meet your expectations.
I didn't get to do everything I wanted to last week. There were a few days in a row of "bad days" that messed with my mellow, but I did get to enjoy plenty of outdoor fun, sleepover craziness, and special treats with the houseful of girls that I had. My only regret is that I didn't remember to catch every single moment on film. I got a few pictures, but not nearly enough. I need to be better about that.... all these golden moments slipping away. My memory is so horrible that I almost rely on photographic evidence to piece together the fun times I've had. Maybe someday soon I will be less afraid to actually GET IN the picture. Maybe after another 30 or so pounds are gone...
Now that the kids are back to school, the house is settling back into the routine of "normalcy" again. My days are much more active than they used to be now that I have Daisy to look after. I get at least 15 minutes of walks in - even on a bad day. On a good day, I might walk her 1/2 a mile or more. While the main responsibility usually falls to LH, I don't mind the excuse to get moving. The darn scale must have been glued because it still won't budge downward a bit, but I am improving every day with less pain and more energy.
Something occurred to me today while I was out running errands with Daisy wagging happily in the back seat - having Daisy with us feels very natural. She fits into our life very well and the kids say it feels like she has always been with us. She does things that R.O. never did, like play fetch with squeaky toys, go for rides in the car just for fun, or curl up on the couch with us. Just thinking of that, though, brought back the pain of missing him so distinctly that it was as if we had come home to his dog tags on the door just yesterday. I had a dream this morning about all the old things of my past and while I couldn't SEE him in the dream, I knew he was there.
It feels odd to miss a pet so much. Growing up, we never had a pet for more than a few years or so and there was never much ceremony about getting one or losing one. Having R.O. for 10 years, though... he was a part of my life longer than one of my kids. He was such an easy and laid back dog, that sometimes I wouldn't think about him being there. Now that he is gone, though, I feel like I wasted all the time I could have been playing with him. I regret that I didn't groom him more, which caused him to scratch, which caused me to be irritated with his fidgeting. I wasn't a very good pet owner, I don't think, leaving him home overnight while we went out of town. I guess I'm just going through the normal grieving process, and it doesn't really hurt any less that it was my pet I lost instead of a human. It isn't on my mind as often, but it is just as painful. I try to be comforted at the thought of him running through the fields in heaven, herding sheep like a work dog should, his fur is thick and shiny, and enjoying all the DQ fries he can eat.
I have to put my sadness aside for now. The kids are home from school and there is homework to be finished, chores to be done, walks to be had, and dinner to be ... attempted. (I'm still not sure what we're having.) On this rainy, windy day I hope each of you is blessed with a fresh breeze of the new season to come.