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Jan 9, 2013

Tails From My Dark Side

It’s the middle of the night, and I’m angry and scared.
The new dog has been difficult lately. I say new dog because we got her nine weeks ago. She was wonderful at first, but after the first skittish week of acclimating to her new home, she has now became the undisciplined queen of the house – a title I thought that was reserved only for my daughters.
She passed all the basic tests. The dog is potty-trained and generally knows the difference between people things and dog toys. However, after the first week, she began digging up the backyard – a huge point of frustration for me. But then she gets bored and starts tearing things up when no one is watching. This means she’s fine when we are around, but leave her unsupervised and some human item will be shredded upon return.
We can’t let her outside because the garden hose, welcome mat, grill accessories, hot-tub pillows or even a loose board in the fence become toys and minced into barely recognizable pieces within ten minutes. Every time I believe I have the backyard free of any possible things to be destroyed, the dog teaches me a lesson in the boundless creativity of abstract art.
To crate her while we are gone has become a ritual like stage performance of a magician being placed in an elaborate device. Shackles and buckles and drapes covering the view are used, and yet the escape artist still manages to get out of the crate without the audience being able to figure out how. Recently, she has been opening doors and freeing the other dog from captivity too. If this were a story where only movie-prop stuff were destroyed and insomnia were a five-second close-up, it would be a hilarious tale.
But it is real. I’m very frustrated, and I don’t know how to solve the problem.
This is where I begin to wonder whether the problem is with the dog or whether the problem is with me. A little bit before two o’clock, not that long ago, I found myself lecturing the dog. Suddenly, the absurdity of my actions hit me, and I asked myself, “Why am I so angry?”
As I’ve mentioned in my blog posts, I have been working on renovating some of my character. I have been angry and frustrated a lot lately. Is it a coincidence, the timing of getting this new dog? Am I so inflexible and rigid in the order of my home that a new dog that creates new-dog problems has thrown me into a tizzy?
I tend not to leave my blog post without resolve. I usually have some moral or lesson to explain the personal saga I reveal here. But today, I have none. My mind is chasing concepts from “first-world problems” to Divine Providence; however, nothing seems clear.
I suppose that is the best answer I have for the moment. Sometimes life doesn’t give us neat clean answers. Sometimes the roots of our problems are ambiguous at most, and we trudge on the best that we can, clinging to the hope that things will get better.
All apologies for a morose and abstruse post.

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