According to her adoption papers it has been very nearly eight years that Maddie and I have been together. It has gotten much easier than it was in the first year, and I wouldn’t trade not one day of it. Each day as I drive the hour it takes between school and home I look forward to the full-body wag she greets me with, as though the mere hours she has been without me were meaningless. Admittedly there are some days I do feel the same; the hours without her are joyless and long though not devoid of meaning.
I am fortunate; with the exception of my brother who is foolishly wholly indifferent to canines my whole family loves Maddie. Setou even is learning to accept not only Maddie herself but the way Americans are with dogs. In Africa, they do not nuzzle up to people, they are not named, they are not treated as children, allowed in the home or (gasp) on the furniture or in the bed, or made to wear clothes. Perhaps between these views there is moderation and therefore wisdom.
Perhaps many years down the road should I adopt again I will not follow my heart right into foolishness. As for Maddie, that ship sailed long ago. She not only sits on the couches as she pleases she jumps over them in one mightily impressive show of athleticism that nonetheless can bother me as we play fetch. She somehow takes up enough of the bed that I have to maneuver myself in all kinds of odd ways to get in, never mind comfortable, though she is only 40 lbs. to my approximate 105. In fact, she reigns so supreme that the bed is truly hers – it is a platform so when she is older and hip dysplasia, so prevalent in shepherds, gets worse in her, she’ll still be able to jump up on it as long as she can and when jumping is no longer possible simply getting up there hopefully will be. I thought this through 5 years ago and her hips are just now beginning to bother her. I am slightly a platform bed decor kind of girl. What I really wanted was this masterful wrought iron beauty with a high headboard and footboard. As impractical as it was stunning, it stayed behind. There was no way Maddie wasn’t going to impale herself on the stakes on that footboard.
For the little booger who has made me, yes ME a utilitarian I’ll be as ridiculous as I can be practical this weekend, making a pupcake to celebrate her adoption day. Certainly it will mean more to me and my parents if we celebrate on Sunday as I hope than it does Maddie, but she does get a huge meat-based cake out of it. Much like her adoption itself, it was I and not she that ultimately got the upper hand when all was said and done. I will never know what Maddie “thinks” or “feels” about the whole deal, of course, but I am just honored daily to be her “momma.”