This is how my day went yesterday:
1. Wake up at 6:30 a.m. Take Rocky out. Wake Em up for school. Swallow frustration as she dawdles through the morning routine. Scream at her to grab her coat and backpack as she races out the door before the bus drives on by.
2. 7:45 a.m. Jay now awake. Make him breakfast, get him dressed, brush his teeth. Put him AND Rocky in the car. Drive Jay to school while Rocky randomly lunges and barks ferociously at certain passersby. Arrive at the preschool. Yank Jay out of the car while pushing Rocky back to keep him in the car. Drop Jay off in his classroom. Return to car and drive to dog park. Listen to Rocky whine the whole way there because we take a new route. Listen to the seat belt warning bell chime incessantly because the car thinks there is an unbuckled person in the passenger seat. Go cross-eyed from trying to see through all the nose prints on the windshield.
3. 10:30 a.m. Arrive at the dog park. Watch Rocky roll around with other dogs in the mud left over from the melting snow. Spend five minutes trying to convince him to come to me when it’s time to leave. Make feeble attempt to wipe six layers of mud, dog slobber and God knows what else off of his paws, legs and tummy before getting him back in the car. Drive home.
4. 11:30 a.m. Arrive home. Shower, change, eat lunch. Coax Rocky into his crate. Go to Costco to buy snacks for the nine first-graders I’m leading in an after-school session of Junior Great Books. Also buy a boatload of groceries for us. Spend too much money (as usual) and load 185 pounds of crap into the trunk.
5. 2:00 p.m. Drive straight to Em’s school. Set up and conduct Great Books session in the library. Try to interest kids in old-fashioned French folk tale or, at a minimum, keep them from rolling around on the floor, picking their noses, making fart noises and/or all the above. Drop Em off from Great Books to the after-school care. Drive home.
5. 4:00 p.m. Arrive home. Play tug-of-war with a very happy dog. Unload and unpack groceries. Change into grubby dog park clothes. Put Rocky back in the car and drive to dog park. Repeat #3. Load Rocky into car and drive to Jay’s preschool.
6. 5:30 p.m. Pick Jay up from preschool. Conduct a multitude of acrobatics to get Jay strapped into his car seat while keeping Rocky from bolting out the door. Attempt to drive with night-blindness + 70 lb. dog trying to climb into my lap. Push him back to passenger seat. Put car back into drive after Rocky shifts it into neutral with his paw. Get stuck at a red light and try to stop Rocky from mercilessly barking at a homeless person on the corner. Stop Rocky from chewing on the radio tuner dial. Ask Jay to stop whining about the fact that I forgot to bring him a snack for the drive home.
7. 6:00 p.m. Pick Em up from after-school car. Crack open the door and shove her in before Rocky can get out. Drive home. Park the car and turn around to find both Rocky and Jay asleep in the back seat. Seriously??? Take Rocky and Em into the house. Come back and peel Jay out of the car seat. Order a pizza for dinner. Pour myself a fishbowl-sized glass of red wine and prepare to do the same or similar tomorrow.
You might ask how much writing I’ve gotten done since the kids have gone back to school. Umm… aside from this blog, that would be zero. Quite frustrating since I was so full of anticipation to really get going now that I’m no longer “working.” I’ve told myself that things will settle down with Rocky. In the not-too-distant future we’ll have a fence, he’ll be trained and I will no longer need to go to the dog park twice a day. Right now though, it feels suspiciously like it did when my kids were infants – organizing my schedule around feedings and naptimes and thanking my lucky stars if I got an hour of peace during the day. I know the time will come (soon) when I don’t need to spend 4+ hours on the dog. I just hope my ambition and excitement about my writing is there to greet it when it comes.
Besides, I fall a little more in love with Rocky every day. Who could possibly resist that face??
By the way, did I mention I’m currently driving a rental car because mine is in the shop? Yes, a majestic Chevy Impala. Ever seen what one of those looks like? Here it is. Now try to picture three humans and a huge dog in this vehicle. Not pretty.Categories: Dogs, Family, I Need Wine Pronto!, Writing · Tags: Dogs, Family, Junior Great Books, Rocky, Writing