Friday, July 5, 2013

Parenthood: Week 6 – The Puppy And The Baby

Last night, instead of leaving when Ollie started crying, Buffy followed him into the nursery as Diana prepared to nurse Ollie in the middle of the night.

This was a big change from the way Buffy reacted to Ollie weeks earlier.

After Ollie came home, Buffy didn't seem interested in Ollie. She went over to sniff him in his car seat when we set it down on the floor but that was it. Diana's mom brought home one of Ollie's little hospital hats for Buffy to sniff a couple days earlier. She was interested in that but when it came to finally meeting Ollie, there wasn't much of a response.

Buffy has been around babies and kids all her life. One of the things we love about is that she is very tolerant of small humans. She doesn't act like a crazy puppy around sleeping babies and she lets little kids carry her around her as if she was a doll. But it's a different thing to visit a kid than having one become part of your everyday life.

You know that type of dog that jumps on your bed in the morning to wake you up? Buffy isn't that kind of dog. Usually I have to get her up in the morning for her walk.  Also, if you get up in the middle of the night and you will probably hear Buffy groan at you as you disturb her sleep.

Buffy usually sleeps in our bedroom on her bed on the floor. Initially, she didn't take very well to her new roommate. As Ollie cried and got up multiple times through the night those first couple weeks, Buffy would groan at the disturbance. Usually, after the first crying fit, she would leave our bedroom and sleep in the living room or the bathroom.

As the weeks passed it seemed that Buffy was satisfied to settling down for the night in a room other than our bedroom. At first this made me and Diana a little sad. We love our puppy and having her sleep in our room provides a sense of family and companionship. So we would put her to bed in her bed in our room but would inevitably find her somewhere else in the house by the next morning.

I don't know if Buffy is getting used to the crying or is more willing to stay in the bedroom because Ollie is sleeping for longer periods, but now we are finding Buffy in our bedroom in the mornings.

Last night, this puppy that I have to literally drag out of bed followed Diana out of our bedroom as sounds of Ollie's cries filled our house. When I got up to check on Ollie and Diana, I expected that Buffy had found a quiet spot in some corner of the house, but instead Buffy was in the nursery sitting in the corner watching Ollie and Diana.

Many people have asked me how Buffy is doing with her new little brother. She is not running up and licking him with excited greetings nor she's cuddling with him. That's not necessarily a bad thing, because Buffy is doing exactly what we she need her to. She's not up in Ollie's face and she gives him space. Ollie doesn't seem interested in her, so Buffy, as she usually does with people, is matching Ollie's interest and energy.

Buffy and Ollie's relationship is going to continue to evolve displayed by little gestures and cute moments. You don't know what a dog is thinking but I think that Buffy is growing used to Ollie. She's feeling what we are feeling and wants to  be with us through it all. There's power in her presence and her choice to stay with us and not turn away from Ollie's cries is a reminder from our puppy what it means to be a family.

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