I have a heavy heart today.
Mr. P has a co-worker whose weimaraner died a few months back. Through a series of conversations, he decided to mention that we have been pondering finding a new home for Nora. Which we have. But, now it feels all too real that we actually might let her go. It's a family that would love and cherish her. They have property out in the country. They live near hiking trails. They have two young daughters who would adore her. They are permanently settled in Guadalajara.
But it's not an easy decision.
We spent over an hour talking it through, with my niece Lexi as our witness, helping us to make a Pro/Con list. Friends, I need your reassurance. I need someone to tell me it's okay. That it's the right thing to do.
Pro - giving Nora away:
1. We would re-gain the full use of our back yard & patio (which is tiny anyway!)
2. I could plant a garden in the small fenced area that is currently Nora's bathroom.
3. I could keep a cleaner house without her tracking in dirt, etc.
4. My schedule would be freed up - I wouldn't have to worry about her twice daily exercise, not leaving her home alone too long, when she has to eat, poop, pee, etc.
5. We would save money - no more dog food, vaccines, vet bills, kennel charges when we take trips.
6. No more barking. (This is a big anxiety trigger for me when thinking about having a baby in the house again)
7. I would have more energy to focus on my boys - their needs, their schedules, being on the floor playing with them undistracted.
8. We would be able to visit our favorite park much more often, which does not allow dogs.
9. No more dog farts.
10. We can sleep in on weekends (haha, who are we kidding?!?!)
11. There would be less yelling in our house.
Con - giving Nora away:
1. I would feel less protected when going on walks/jogs.
2. Solo will be sad and miss her. Heck, we all will at least a little bit :)
3. I would take over cleaning food spills and messes off the floor.
4. We would lose a primary source of motivation to exercise.
5. We will be ashamed to have to tell all our Dog Park friends.
6. I, primarily, will experience a great deal of guilt & feelings of failure as a dog mommy.
What do you think? I would love to hear anyone's experiences or thoughts on this dilemma. Obviously, from the list above, we are leaning toward giving Nora to this family. I feel like it's a pretty unique and amazing opportunity to have a family that we have no doubts or reservations about to adopt our dog. . . but, at the same time, it's never an easy decision.
I know when thinking about facing the postpartum period again for round 2, I have struggled with the thought of Nora becoming a burden for me. I worry about her barking and waking me or the baby up, I worry about her demanding need for exercise when I am exhausted and caring for a fussy baby, I worry about her chewing the baby's things or misbehaving out of jealousy.
But, I can't shake the feelings that giving her away means I failed. We always envisioned the boys growing up with her into their teenage years. It's hard to admit that it just wasn't the right time for a puppy. A first time mommy of a one-year-old (& slowly healing from PPD/A) and a 6 week old high-energy puppy was not a great combination.
But that's still hard to admit.
It's hard to let go.