Today I became a dog lover.
I do not love all dogs, just one…Poet. Today, the fourteen month, sixteen pound schnoodle and I connected on a very deep level.
Let me begin by sharing our history together. About a year ago, my sons began asking for a puppy. After a visit with my sister, they began asking specifically for a schnoodle (shout out to Grady, my nephdog). I was not fond of this idea but thought it an excellent way to teach them some responsibility and award them for good behavior. We got the puppy. I was not particularly fond of him. Over the last year he ate my dining room chairs, funked up my sofa, shredded roll after roll of toilet paper, soiled my carpet…the list goes on and on. I tolerated him because my sons loved him.
Everything changed today.
Poet needed grooming. His hair had gotten so tangled that the salon recommended a buzz cut. I agreed. “He’s a gorgeous little mixed baby. I love how he has schnauzer hair on top and poodle hair on the bottom.” The ladies went on and on over his array of hues: red, gold, grey, tan.
Genetics is funny. His mother was white. His father was black. He was adopted. My third child is a canine reflection of myself.
It took over four hours to file his nails, clean his ears, cut his curls and flush his anal glands (uhmmm, yeah). When I walked into the pet store, the groomer shouted “Poet’s mommy is here.” I smiled. I felt that same sense of pride I feel when I walk into the classroom of one of my human sons and all the kids get excited and whisper “That’s Ms. Bennett.” He was overly excited to see me. He had no idea that before today, I was never overly excited to see him.
On the ride home, I remembered a time in high school where a boy and girl were paired as a couple and required to “raise” a baby together for a week. My partner was white and we thought it would be clever to use a grey stocking to create our baby (the teacher didn’t get it). We, like all other kids were taught that black plus white equaled grey. We were misinformed.
Sometimes black plus white equal red and gold and grey and tan or as I like to call myself, soft honey. Your color can’t define you any more than the texture of your hair… be you canine or human.