Tomorrow will mark two weeks of relative calm. Two weeks! I assured my husband that I would write a post called "Hallelujah Chorus" when the day finally arrived. It came and went. I think I was too suspicious that things might fall through and we'd find ourselves back at square one. Two weeks later, we are fairly certain there is no going back. We are now a pet-free home.
I have watched numerous status updates detailing the agony of losing a beloved pet. Perhaps there is something wrong with me, but I could never really call Harley Dogg a beloved pet. Frankly, he annoyed the bejeebies out of me! So, even though part of me wonders if it will seem callous to internally sing the hallelujah chorus, a bigger part of me is looking around our house and heaving a contented sigh. There are still traces of the dog's existence - the hairs appear even after I have vacuumed and dusted and swept - but their proliferation has ceased. Eventually, say six months from now, the final traces will be gone.
It is the calm that I find most comforting. When we walk in the door, immediate chaos doesn't erupt. In the morning and at night, I don't have to interrupt sleep to attend to the dog's whines for a trip outside, where he would sniff the ground and then infuriate me by heading back inside without even so much as dropping an ounce of what I thought he had to go out there for! No more poop patrol (although we may still find traces of that for a while to come). No more drags around the nearby golfing community with every passerby commiserating on my lack of control. No more trying to block out the sound of his barks on the porch while my husband ate a late dinner and I put the boys to bed. I can now leave food sitting on the counter while I walk to the next room.
I was worried that Sean would miss Harley. Every day that boy loved on that dog. I will never erase the image of Sean curled up against Harley's chest, with Sleepy Bear tucked under one arm and the other arm bent for fingers in the mouth.
It was a young girl who responded to our posters (finally tossing any desire to reclaim even a penny of the money we put out for his purchase). The first day she came she wanted the dog for her parents. We were not surprised when they declared him too big for their tastes. Then, she called again to say that a nurse who works at the hospital with her mother would like to try the dog to see if he gets along with her two other dogs (my brain can't even go there - three dogs????).
I asked Sean if he wanted to say good-bye to the dog, since the dog might not return. He said no. And he hasn't missed the dog one bit.
In fact, I think the only one who misses the dog is my husband. He remarks over and over again, "Well, at least you don't have the dog to deal with any more! Don't you miss him?" Every time, I remind him that I don't.
Of course, there is still boundless chaos here in our home. Especially this week when the boys were home for Spring Break and we were tied down because of bad colds. They argued. They fought. They tore the house apart. But, I didn't have to take them outside in the strange arctic cold (Spring Break? yeah right!). They didn't shed hair all over the laminate flooring. They didn't dig up mole hills.
As for Sean, the other morning when I was still lying in bed, he joined me there and tucked his little head right against my stomach. Moments later, Sleepy Bear was in place and the fingers went to his mouth (oy - we're going to have to battle that habit soon, but it is so sweet that I will hate to see it go). I'm perfectly happy with this arrangement. Those cuddles are mine once again!
I'll take the relative calm. In fact, I'm thanking God daily for the relative calm. May it last a good long time (Trevor's already begging for a snake - yikes).