Thursday, March 16, 2017

I Almost Feel Like A Failure. The Operative Word Is...Almost.

Before writing this post, I spent an hour just sitting here, gazing aimlessly at the photo I chose for this blog column. Willa was, and still is, curled up in a tiny ball against my leg, sound asleep. I'm beyond exhausted. I haven't slept for more than 2 or 3 hours at a time in 2 weeks. I have yet to create a homemade dog treat recipe this week. I still need to add a couple of pages to both blog sites. Not a single quilt was made. I've fallen behind on the Bodacious Biscuit Love Blog Site. The big painting project we had scheduled for April is rescheduled for the week before Memorial Day. My to-do lists scribbled on PostIt Notes have sat untouched. I almost feel like a failure. The operative word is...almost.

Thankfully, shortly before crossing that line of deeming myself as a complete failure, several things happened simultaneously over the past 12 hours.

The first...

Lisa noticed my quiet demeanor this evening while we ate a late dinner at the table. Due to Blizzard Stella/Eugene on Tuesday, and the travel ban that shut down her place of employment that day, she's been working late all week. That included Monday, the day before the storm. Our evening schedule has been a bit challenging. Dinner has been served later than usual.

She asked what was troubling me. I pretty much reiterated what's in the first paragraph of this blog column. She sat there listening as I vented.

After taking a sip of her iced coffee, she put down her fork and locked eyes with me...

"You're being too hard on yourself. It bothers me when you do that because you do so much for me and our family. I know it's easier said than done, trust me I do, but please focus on what you have accomplished in the past couple of weeks instead of what hasn't gotten done..."

The conversation continued, but that was the gist of it. My brain instantly reflected back to a blog column I had written back in December. It was about focusing on the journey as much as I focused on the destination. Adapting that mind frame was, and still is, my biggest goal for 2017.

Okay, I needed a little reminder. I'm human.

The second...

I had a brief email chat with an old friend. She asked how the new addition to our family was doing. It's been 2 weeks since our sweet Willa joined our crazy family. I told her it was going incredibly well and then I reiterated, again, most of what's in the first paragraph of this blog column.

She replied with some sound words of encouragement.

"I know human kids and fur-kids are two different worlds, but there is some common ground when there's a new addition to the family. You and Lisa have a new baby in the house. Everyone is getting used to that...even Willa. Plus, the poor girl is in heat. For now, things are going to be crazy. You're going to fall behind. You're going to be exhausted. Probably cranky. You'll find yourself typing blog posts when you should be sleeping. You'll catch a nap in the afternoon instead of vacuuming or doing the dishes. You may go a couple of days without taking a shower. All of that is okay. Eventually, like with all of your other fur-kids and the kittens you've fostered, things will fall into place. You'll get back on schedule. Until then, don't be too hard on yourself. A new addition to the family is tough on everyone. But, it's so worth it."

She was right and had she said this to me face to face, I would have hugged her too tight and for too long.

In the 2 weeks since Willamina has joined our family, my schedule has been turned upside down. I knew that was going to happen. The same thing happened with Coco, Sophie, and Lobo. It also happened when we fostered kittens that required bottle feeding.

I do okay the first week, but when the second week rolls around, sleep deprivation kicks in and, like Lisa said, I'm too hard on myself. I focus too much on what I haven't done instead of what I have done.

This leads to the third thing...

I've accomplished a lot in the past 2 weeks since Willa has joined our family. Last week was more productive on the work front. This week was more about hitting milestones.

Willa has adapted to a routine of sorts. We can't fully get her on the same routine as her siblings because she's still in heat, but it's enough to where I can get back on my "normal" schedule.

Coco, Sophie, Lobo, and Willa adore each other. She's the perfect fit to our crazy family. Again, because she's in heat, her time outside of the home office is limited a little bit. That's okay. She's almost out of heat.

Willa has transitioned to homemade meals and treats. So far, there have been no food allergies or sensitivities. We'll continue to introduce her to more fresh produce and monitor things.

Willa doesn't cower nearly as much as she did 2 weeks ago. I don't like it when pups cower. It breaks my heart. She did it all the time, but now, it's very little.

Coco, Sophie, Lobo, and Olivia have welcomed their new sister and they're used to her. They've been patient, kind, and they've taught her some boundaries.

And finally...

I probably won't get a Bodacious Patchwork Doggy Quilt made this week.

I probably won't create a homemade dog treat recipe this week...although there's still hope for this.

I have a lot of work stuff to catch up on over the weekend.

I probably won't get it all done.


Tomorrow, we're having company over for a delicious St. Patrick's Day dinner and wine.

I'm going to enjoy myself.

This weekend, I'll do my best to get caught up, but I won't sacrifice time with Lisa or our kids.

When Monday arrives, I'll exhale.

It's a new week.


I didn't fail.

Life. Is. Good.

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