Thanks to our prime swath of land – country – and the obedience of this dog – just enough- she gets to go outside without being tethered to a leash. Right now the farmers who share our mile block have been layering the fields with nice layers of crap to help the beans this summer and fall and this dog is doing her best to help them spread it out even more. If they are the baker who layers icing on a cake, she is the specialist who makes sure every inch is covered. She needed a bath.
Our five year old wanted to help bathe her, no problem really. Except she kept spraying the dog’s head and my head and the dogs eyes and my eyes and my shoes and most of the other things in the backyard that did not have crap that needed washed off. I felt my frustration building like water behind a newly formed damn, ready to burst and wreak havoc on any it it’s path. Then a moment came over me where I asked so what. I’m getting wet, so what. This is taking longer than it should, so what. She’s spraying the swing-set, shed, house, flowers, bushes, patio, table with water, so what.
I’m a pretty good dad overall but dealing with the build up of frustration and anger is something I’ve always struggled with. Getting angry about something has never helped me. Yelling at my kids and sending them scurrying to time-out like a sea monster attacking a pirate ship never makes me feel better. It makes me feel worse.
Nothing is perfect and life would suck if it was. It’s about the destination, not the journey and part of that journey is the process of self-improvement. I’ve always been focused on helping the kids get better at whatever, now I realize that I can get better too. I can start by understanding that nothing is perfect.