Yesterday, Husband, (to a lesser extent) Daughter, and I did some serious work in making her bedroom more grown up, more tween-ish, as well as simply more comfortable. She had a high loft bed with a desk and book shelves underneath which served her well for two years, but she was not hitting her head on the ceiling and not able to comfortably be under it, either. Husband and I were just going to disassemble the whole thing and use her old bed frame but we had some ingenious ideas and made some quick changes with the help of a hacksaw. It’s now a slightly elevated bed that we can store boxes beneath. It’s perfect.
During the process, I said to Daughter that I was glad we were able to give her some control over things. She spoke to me honestly and openly about how hard the world has been for her lately and how this really helped. She’s got some of her own new posters up and she feels like her room reflects who she is more than before. She spoke about her wishes for the summer and how she hopes I am done with my surgeries and have a classroom job so that we can just relax and be us, “like we used to,” she said. Jokingly, I said to her, “I know what you mean. Oh how I wish, wish, wish I could stress about something other than cancer and a job.”
As soon as I said it, I knew it was ridiculous to tempt fate or God or the gods or whomever.
Now, let me tell you a little background about my pets before I proceed. If you’re a loyal reader you may already know that I have two dogs and a cat. The cat is the kind who makes cat people go bananas for him and dog people think they could like cats. He has lots of dog traits but none of the obnoxious ones. He’s beautiful and soft and affectionate and kills mice. He’s a keeper. Of my dogs, Dog the Elder is a very old girl who consistently makes me think she’s going to die and then rallies for months. She’s a herder, so she barks, and she was in a shelter for a long time, so she used to be very food selfish. Other than that, she’s sort of perfect. She’s smart and funny- yes, she can be intentionally funny. She loves adventure and trusts Husband and me with her life. We adore her. Dog the Younger is almost two and is a very calm puppy. She loves her cuddles with me to the point that she will demand them if I have not been on the couch. She chewed a few things when she was quite young but has otherwise been an easy puppy to own. She has the canine version of IBS, so she costs us a fortune, but we adore her and her stupid, tongue hanging out of her mouth grin. In the pet department, having adopted strictly from shelters with no real knowledge of parents, we’ve been incredibly lucky.
So, there I was, wishing I could worry about something else. Hanging out with my amazing family and nearly perfect animals. I finished my day and began my usual weekday morning of teaching. For some reason, Dog the Younger was going crazy. I could hear her though the door whining and pacing. She was running up and down the stairs and then began scratching at my office door. She’s never done that before. Between classes, I ran out to check on her. I followed her around and…. nothing. I have no idea what was going on with her. Except she dug holes into our less than a year old couch. Multiple holes. She pulled out the stuffing and ripped the fabric away so that the holes cannot even be sewn shut. The time in my life when I have the least ability to replace my furniture is the time when I need it the most.
So, I got my wish. I have something else to worry about. And just like in all of the dumb sitcoms and 1980’s movies, my wish turned out to be a cosmic trick.