Does this still work?

I wanted to stop by and let people know I am alive, and we are getting by.  Life has been busy, but also some of our early 2019 hardships have turned out okay.

First, I am still lost.  Unlike many infertility bloggers, I have not vanished because I’m too busy.  Rather I’m still struggling with how to write, knowing that someone out there has figured out who I am.  The concern is not about me, but rather I don’t want to turn Little MPB into a poster-child for adoption.  And so, I’m stuck.  Everyday I want to write, yet every day I don’t write.  I truly don’t know how to merge these realities.

Second, Doodle MPB.  My gosh, is she ever the most challenging dog I’ve ever met! Yet, her heart of gold, keeps us dedicated.  She goes to doggy daycare twice a week, and we are all staying sane.  She definitely needs more walks, and definitely always wants more snuggles.  But, she’s been healthy for the last few months and we seem to have found an equilibrium that works for our family and keeps her mostly sane.

Third, the brain surgery is done and went well.  The tumor was benign.  The surgery went so well the team asked to use the video they took as a teach tool for future neurologists.  Our family member is expected to survive and lead a normal life.  We couldn’t have asked for a better outcome.  Thankfully.

Fourth, cancer is cancer and Alzheimer’s is Alzheimer’s.  Terminal cancer and late stage Alzheimer’s are the devil.  These diagnosis wont change, but the love that comes out in such hard times is nothing short of beautiful and inspirational.  Hopefully quality of life continues for as long as possible.  And I will continue to hope that our visit in August will be as magical as I imagine it will be.

Fifth, we survived June.  June was insane.  June had me on the road 15 days/nights with work.  June had Mr. MPB working long days.  June also had our family travel for a pre-brain surgery get together.  June also had Mr. MPB traveling for the actual brain surgery.  Some of this travel did not coordinate well, and other family members answered our call for help, stepping up when we needed them.  June also saw a major poop regression (I swear potty training has been my absolute least favorite part of parenting thus far).  But, to be fair, June has been incredibly stressful for all of us and Little MPB showed his stress in the only way he knows how.

Sixth, among the crazy I determined I need to be healthier.  I signed up for a ladies soccer team.  I also signed up to meet with a personal trainer twice a week, and convinced Mr. MPB to join me.  It’s not perfect, because twice a week is really not enough, but at least it’s something.  And right now, something is better then nothing.

Seventh, July and August will be spent as a family.  Lots of time in the mountains.  Lots of camping.  Lots of playing at the park.  Lots of swimming at the beach.  Lots of time with friends and chosen-family.  Lots of snuggles.  Life wont be perfect, because I’m confident there is no such thing.  But, I am looking forward to a summer of mostly good, almost perfect days with my family.

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I thought today I’d write about Doodle MPB.

I still say she is without a doubt the biggest mistake of my life, but thankfully my biggest mistake is a puppy, not a crack-cocaine addiction.  So clearly it could be a lot worse.

I’m almost worried to write this, because if jinx’s are a real thing, I may be in trouble….but, I want to share that things are better then they have ever been with her.  She’s now just over 14 months old, and we are starting to hit a groove as a family.

  • She’s completely off Clomicalm, and has been for a few months now.20180914 (3)
  • She goes to doggy daycare 2 times per week.  Honestly, at this point we know she needs another dog at home, as another dog seems to keep her anxiety in check and gives her a playmate.  But, there is absolutely no way we can bring another animal into our lives right now, so it’s just not an option.
  • She continues to be great with Little MPB, and we are working to increase their duration of time together (when they get really playing with each other, both of their energy escalates and we usually separate them to keep both the human toddler and the dog toddler safe – for the record, often the human is the instigator as he starts to play too rough).
  • Her barking is no longer extreme as we starting using a vibration collar after she turned one when the research and our vet said it would be okay.  She is still talkative and vocal, but it’s no longer 24.7.  (I honestly never thought I’d be willing to use such a collar, but it worked within 2 days as she’s very smart and learned very quickly to only bark when she needs to go outside or come inside or when someone is approaching the house).
  • She hasn’t randomly hurt herself or been sick in a few months, so that’s a bonus.
  • Whenever we are at home, she has free reign of a large portion of the house.  We still crate her when we leave, but I suspect in a few more months she’ll no longer need the crate.  She is even starting to just chill out in the living room in the evenings, which is a huge success in my books.

Honestly, my biggest mistake was getting a puppy with a 2 year old.  I did my research to get a super kid friendly breed (labradoodle), and thankfully she lives up to her breed reputation as a kid friendly.  She truly has a heart of gold.  But, by pure bad luck, we got a high anxiety and high need puppy, which resulted in some pretty unbearable moments as my priority was Little MPB, not Doodle MPB.  Which of course wasn’t fair to Doodle MPB, but was/is a fact of our lives right now.

I guess what I’m saying is everyone was right, don’t get a puppy with a 2 year old.  But, thankfully, at this point, I truly believe we have made it through the worst of the puppy stuff.  I suspect she will always be anxious, neurotic and high needs dog.  But, at this point, I am also optimistic that she will be a great family dog for years to come.

Now here’s to hoping that sharing this didn’t just put a jynx on our delicate situation!

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