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Rosie Carter

Ruth & Rosie – 1 Year Later

I’ve officially had my rescue basset hound Rosie for a year! I love my dog.

Pet me pleaseAnd can I just say that I won the dog lottery when I got this creature? She’s so sweet, well-behaved, and just a good dog. Her worst habit, which I find endearing, is the fact that she howls when the phone rings. When she wants attention and you’re sitting down, she walks up to you and puts her head on your knee or the chair – whichever her head can reach.

She’s a basset, so she’s a bit stubborn by nature. When we go walking, she’s not an alpha dog, so she doesn’t like it when people or other dogs are walking behind her. She just plops her butt down and waits for you to come to her, hopefully give her attention, and then follow you after you pass. At 60 pounds, she’s quite an anchor when she wants to be.

I’ve tracked her likes and dislikes on Facebook this year. It’s been pretty fun to see what turns her crank:

  • Rosie Likes: rawhide bones, tennis balls, belly rubs, fish, beef, chicken, rice, apples, mango, pineapple, peanut butter & butternut squash.
  • Rosie Dislikes: squeaky toys, stuffed animals, strawberries, lemon, carrots, & celery.

Rosie BoneI love my baby girl. I nearly cry every time I have to travel and leave her at the kennel (or “camp” as I call it). I can’t sleep when she’s having medical issues – like when she got a lung infection. I was up every couple of hours to make sure she was breathing. Then there was the time I learned the hard way that she’s allergic to fabric softener. She was wheezing until I ripped the recently-washed sheet off her bed at 1:30 in the morning.

Did I mention Rosie’s smart? She knows she’s not allowed on the couch, so she doesn’t do it when I’m around, but occasionally I’ll find a throw pillow on the floor from when she knocked it off while finding a place to snuggle in. She also knows where the UPS Store keeps the dog treats and will help herself to one if the box isn’t kept out of her reach.

So here’s to my baby, Rose Louise Carter, and to many more years together.

Belly Rub Please

I Got A Dog

I adopted a basset hound this year. Her name is Rosie. We’ll celebrate two months together this week. I never thought my landlords (aka parents) would agree to let me get a pet, and I was shocked when they said “Yes” after two years of prodding.

I adopted Rosie from the Arizona Basset Hound Rescue. After I passed my interview and my home inspection, they started sending me picture of prospective dogs, and to be honest, I wasn’t that enthused by Rosie when I first saw her. Her head looked too small for her body in her picture but she was the right age (four years old) and her foster parents lived close by so I agreed to do a meet and greet. I knew within minutes of seeing her that she was my dog.

I was so nervous about becoming responsible for another life. I had never owned a dog that I was solely responsible for. I’m so grateful to my friends who have dogs and the clerks at PetSmart for helping me make sure I had everything Rosie would need.

Rosie’s had mostly a good life from what I was told. Her first owner took excellent care of her for about four years but then his job situation changed and he didn’t think it was fair to be away from home for as long as his job required. He supposedly thought he lined up a good home for her, but she ended up with someone who neglected her. Her nails looked like they were never trimmed so they got way too long and curved under her paws. Thank goodness she ended up at the basset rescue after only a few months in that situation.

Rosie is the sweetest dog you’ll ever meet. She has the cutest face and she is a total attention whore. We go walking twice a day and she has become one of the darlings of the neighborhood. She’s mostly mellow and well-behaved. We usually play with her ball every day.  Sometimes I roll it and she retrieves it and sometimes I roll it at her and she acts like a goalie. Sometimes she likes to throw the ball for herself and chase after it. It’s so cute.

When I first met Rosie, I tried to make her howl but nothing worked. I mainly wanted to make sure that she wouldn’t howl when I sang. After I had her for a few weeks, I learned that the only thing that makes her howl is the sound of a ringing telephone. It makes me laugh every time she does it.

Sometimes I look at Rosie and it’s so surreal that I have her.  Having a dog that sleeps at my feet in my office was part of my master plan for my law firm. We’re still working the kinks out of our relationship. She’s not always excited about meal time or walking at my desired pace, but I really couldn’t ask for a better dog.

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On Being an Existentialist

North Star Circa RMNP by Jasen Miller

Some days I’m profoundly aware of the fact that I’m an existentialist. This is one of those days.

I’ve always had to look for the deeper meaning of things. I’m driven by the possibility that what I do makes a difference, that people or things are changed because of something I did. I need to know that what I do has an impact.

Some people have children, and through them they have an inherent legacy that will live on. I have no intention of procreating, so I’m left with the possibility that I will not know what my legacy is because we don’t always know when we make a difference.

In my professional life, I have to change jobs when it stops being meaningful. When I go too long without thinking, “This is why I do what I do,” it’s time for me to move on. Before law school, I was a mental health therapist. There were days when I knew what I did mattered and other days where I felt like I was paid conversation. There have been instances where I’ve run into my past client since leaving the profession where they thanked me for the work I did when I thought I wasn’t doing anything.

My friend told me I should have outgrown this mind set when I finished college, and I’m sure it would make certain things easier. I accept that I am what I am and that it comes with the constant questioning and searching for meaning.

Rosie!

I’m not sure what brought on this self-reflection. Maybe it’s because a friend recently had a major heart attack or the fact that the anniversary of another friend’s death just passed. Both of these people were young and vibrant when they encountered unexpected medical emergencies, and one didn’t survive. Danielle Zeder reminded us at Ignite Phoenix #12 that the only guarantees in life are birth and death. We don’t know how much time we have in between and it’s important that we use that time well.

I feel lucky that I’m crafting the life I’ve always wanted. I have my own business, a basset hound who adores me, a singing voice that’s comparable to the angels, and a host of people in my life that I love and who love me. Sometimes I worry that I’m not doing enough to create my legacy, but then I have to step back and remember that that story will be someone else’s to tell. My job is in the here and now.