Love and Frustration

by Zen Gray

At the end of my last blog, I mentioned that we got a puppy named Tippy Longstocking. We have since renamed her “The Piddler”.

Ohhhh Emmmmm Geeeee.

How can a little thing pee this much? What’s awesome is that it’s raining buckets (thankfully NOT cats and dogs) outside and house training a new puppy in the rain is nothing short of excruciating torture for all those involved.

It’s been interesting to watch David (my fiancé… tee hee!) try to handle the following situation:

  • We take her out of the crate.
  • We put on our rain gear and walk her outside our place (down the wet tile stairs, past the puddles on the concrete walkway and then out to the grass.)
  • Tippy goes to the bathroom so we praise her and immediately give her a little treat.
  • We walk back through the rain to our door.
  • Towel off her body and wipe her toes.
  • We take off our boots, coats and hats and shake out the umbrella.
  • Then she immediately pees on the floor again.

What would you do? Perhaps you could remain calm after the first 10 times but soon you might let your patience give way to a frustrating exclamatory remark or two.

I’ve heard people say to couples that are considering having a baby to get a dog first. I think that’s pretty wise considering the above scenario. I haven’t really seen David in this kind of predicament before and it’s been enlightening. He definitely gets more upset than I do, but I think it’s because I’ve had devil dogs in the past and I’ve gone through house training before. This is all new for him. He never had a new puppy. What’s worse is that his parents sent away their dogs to be trained so when they came back, they immediately obeyed all commands. That’s a pretty awesome system, actually, but it doesn’t prepare a do-it-yourself-er for potty training.

I had to share with him, “Honey, you’re giving me a headache because you’re getting so stressed. Can we just accept that she’s going to pee all over the floor for a while and we’ll just have to take her out?”

He sighed and said he was sorry for getting so frustrated. After taking the dog out a few more times, I noticed that he grabbed a chocolate bar out of the freezer after our dinner. Ahh… I can so relate to that. A little treat to calm you down, right? In that moment I really wanted one, too, but David is fortunate in that he has a naturally lean build so chocolate bars won’t phase him in the least. I, however, can’t do sweets as much as I used to because not only will I put on weight but my skin will break out. Ugh… fabulous.

I used to eat more sugar when my life was stressful, but now I realize that I indulge more when I’m happy than when I’m frustrated. For example, I ate Cold Stone for two days AFTER the marathon just to celebrate while we were still in Honolulu. But I haven’t had any sweets since I’ve been back in LA. I’d love to be able to eat chocolate chip cookies all day every day but there are consequences to that choice. I also don’t want to eat just vegetables all day every day either. I try to practice moderation even though I LOVE excess! There are so many emotional associations with food, though. I’ve definitely had to become aware of how I was USING food to become aware of how others use it, too.

I love David. I love my new puppy. And I was frustrated with both of them at different points in the day but dealing with it head-on seems to help me keep in control of my sanity and my waistline. It reminds me of a quote I once heard:

“God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”

It helps that they’re both so incredibly cute, too.

Enjoy the rest of the weekend! Now I’m looking forward to last minute holiday shopping… NOT.

Health & Happiness,



3 Comments to “Love and Frustration”

  1. Hi Zen! Congrats on your engagement! I loved u on ‘Workout’. U were my favorite character. Good luck with the puppy & Merry Christmas!

  2. Zen, the Dog Whisperer may have some ideas on how to assist in potty training. Cesar is “really” good. I love dogs, but they require so much attention that one doesn’t fit my lifestyle so I have cats instead. 🙂 I think I indulge more when I’m upset and frustrated than when I’m happy. When I’m happy I seem to care more about what I eat and how I exercise. Unlike you the holidays have “completely” derailed me, but I’m ready to begin again in the New Year. I know more about myself now than I did last year and so I know what I need to do to accomplish my goals in 2011. Good luck to you!

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