Twelve months ago (tomorrow), Rob and I did our best to "puppy-proof" our apartment and on February second I got in the car to bring our puppy home from his foster family. It was a warm afternoon and I listened to Taylor Swift's "Fearless" album the whole way, which always brings me back to springtime in college. I carried him to the car and immediately he crawled onto my lap before heading back to the passenger seat and falling asleep.
What else can I say? Probably a lot.
I think he might be my best friend. I certainly spend more time with him than anyone else. We have our routine down, and these past few weeks of being out of town has brought me quite a bit of anxiety--I joke that I miss him more than Rob because I can always call or text Rob, but I just have to sit around and wonder if Ender is thinking about me, too. I know he isn't though, because he gets to go to daycare while Rob is at work and play with other dogs until he passes out.
This dog means the world to me, but there have been struggles. I knew it would be hard work, but there were a few things that sort of blindsided me in unusual ways. When we first got him, he would do puppy stuff and I would think that maybe he was a bad dog. I was constantly frustrated by him, but if Rob got frustrated by him, I would get defensive or insecure--somehow I translated his frustration with Ender into frustration with me. I have always been thankful to have a super solid relationship with my husband, but we actually had to find even better ways to get on the same team when it came to the dog. It was the first time we added a sometimes unpredictable element to our relationship, and I know a dog is not a child but I think Ender has been great training wheels for the day we decide to become parents.
Also, he's just really damn cute.
So for the sake of consistency, and to celebrate the fact that he's been part of our little family for a year, here's a list of things about Ender:
- Still only weighs 50 pounds.
- Is now one year and almost three months old.
- Has really sensitive skin, specifically his ears. He is always itchy and we're in the process of trying to figure out if he has a food allergy or not.
- Loves to cuddle on the couch with us (or whoever might be sitting on our couch).
- Runs with me a couple times a week and loves it.
- Now sits in this old chair we brought into our living room and would rather be there than anywhere else in the apartment. See here, here, and here.
- Makes me smile every single day, no matter what.