Where in the World is DiNozzo?
The question I have gotten asked a lot when people stop by to meet Attley or come over for a play date is-- “Don’t you have a dog?” or “Where is DiNozzo?”
These are great questions and I cringe every time someone asks me. The answer is Yes--we do have a dog. After my water broke, DiNozzo, our Shih Tzu-Bichon mix went to live with my mom and brother. Our life turned upside down. Matt was a single parent for Emmett at home and I was in the hospital keeping little bean growing. So, DiNozzo went to grammies.
After Attley was discharged from the NICU and able to come home, we thought it would be a great time to bring DiNozzo home and “rip the bandaid off” so to speak. I mean if you’re going to have your world turned right side up, just do it all at once.
Big, big mistake.
Attley was discharged from the NICU on Christmas Eve--it was an amazing Christmas Present-- and a few days later DiNozzo moved back in with us. In my head, I thought it would be great. Emmett would get to know him again and they could be cuddle buddies. I envisioned them running around playing, while I fed Attley a bottle. We would be the perfect family of 4 with a dog.
Reality was that I forgot how needy DiNozzo is. I mean he is REALLY needy. I believe he has some undiagnosed anxiety that makes him even more needy dog. DiNozzo refused to leave my side. He would follow me everywhere on our main floor, refused to acknowledge Emmett existed, and was constantly looking for a way to be on my lap or trying to lay on me. It was exhausting. I mean I had a 6 week old preemie and an 18 month old also who needed my constant attention and then to add a needy dog to the mix-- the breaking point happened..
I couldn’t do it. At this time, I was also exclusively pumping. So, I was attempting to entertain Emmett, feed Attley, pump, and care for a fricken needy dog. Then the breaking point happened--There was a moment when Attley was crying to be fed, I was trying to wrap up pumping, and DiNozzo kept jumping on the couch to sit on me.
I just couldn’t do it. I could not have another living thing that needed my attention and care. So, DiNozzo went back to Grammies and all I could think about is how I had failed as a momma.
I saw people all the time who have more kids than we do and manage to have a pet, if not multiple, and I couldn’t get my crap together to care for my dog?! For a while, I let the guilt eat at me, and then finally I had had enough of the crap in my head. I love DiNozzo and the best place for him right now is with my mom. He has another dog to play with, a fenced in yard, and gets to sleep in my mom's bed! At our house, he wasn’t allowed upstairs, let alone in our bed-- so really, he has it made.
I realized through this experience is that it is SO easy to compare ourselves to other mommas. They make it look like they are doing it better or managing it better. In reality we all are just trying to survive and enjoy every chaotic moment along the way. I am here to tell you that if you don’t feel like you are doing enough, trust me, you are. With all the “hats” we wear, it is a miracle that we all stay sane! Give yourself grace, a little extra love, and know that you are not alone in this crazy journey through motherhood.