While Heather’s been on a real vacation in San Francisco, I’ve been holding down the fort at HQ. It hasn’t been too difficult, but Leta definitely is starting to play us against one another. Whenever I’d tell her no or that we were not going to do what she wanted (which is frequently), she’d start in with “But I need my mom.”
Sure you do kid, but guess what, if mom were here, SHE’D AGREE WITH ME. Which I actually said a few times, but in a nicer way, then in a meaner way and finally I would just move on and we’d have the meltdown, etc.
For the most part, Leta did very well over the weekend, as did Coco. However, the first night without Heather was a doozy. I’ve completely forgotten what having a puppy in the house means. Here’s the timeline of the first night:
7:30 pm: Leta goes to bed with little ceremony, but she is asking for her mom pretty much constantly. We don’t normally stay in bed with her, but I do for a few minutes (she wasn’t asleep) and then we did the bedtime drill and she was fine.
3:00 am: Coco whining in her crate. I shush her. She only whines in the middle of the night if she really needs to go. I shush her again and wait to see if she’ll go back to sleep.
3:03 am: Coco needs to go out. I wait a full minute after she stops whining before I open the crate and we rush outside. On our way, Coco is whining so loudly, Chuck appears from his public access all night goth show Barkula’s Vault to make sure everything is okay. Coco does both kinds of business transactions. It takes awhile for her to poop because she’s a two-stager. First stage drops immediately, but second stage drops take much longer to work out. I’m trying to have good energy about taking a puppy out at 3 in the morning, but deep down, I’m not doing so well. I took her out three times (30 minute intervals) before going to bed last night and she only peed once. No poop. Finally second stage drops.
3:20 am: Coco goes back in the crate and I go back to bed.
4:30 am: I fall back asleep (finally).
6:36 am: Coco is whining again. I shush her. She doesn’t stop and we do the 3 am drill again. Massive dump. What is this dog eating? Neighborhood kids?
7:08 am: Leta is awake.
I really didn’t get a moment of quiet or calm until 13 hours later and found that if I kept moving, I was able to maintain control pretty well. Managing the kid and the puppy is a delicate dance of when to direct, when to leave alone, when to assist, when to discipline and when to comfort. I don’t know how people do it alone, I really don’t. Here’s to all the single parents out there; you are amazing.
I can’t wait for Heather to return. Can’t. Wait.
Also published on Medium.