But… What If…?

April 1, 2010 at 7:30 am 23 comments

It’s been a while since we’ve talked about Rookie. We had a bit of an argument last night and she may have uttered the words “worst mother in the history of all mothers.” She visited this little blog of mine and saw that the last time her name was mentioned was 9 days ago and it was one quick mention about how much I hate it when she licks her paws in the middle of the night. Apparently that’s not very loving of me. Apparently that’s not being a good mom… or something. So anyways she’s pissed and she spent the evening telling me all about it.

So now I’m going to try to make it up by telling you all about her. Although I’m a little bitter myself so it may not be the most flattering story. That’ll teach her to tell a pregnant woman that she’s a bad mom.

I don’t know how the weather is in your part of the country, but here in Houston, it’s Heavenly. The mornings and evenings are a tad chilly for my liking but the rest of the day is awesome. Sunny, cool, breezy. We’ve been trying to think of different outdoor activities that we can do so we can enjoy this. Last week Stephen had the brilliant idea of taking Rookie to this new dog park about 10 minutes away. Since he chose to go on a Tuesday I decided to stay home and watch Biggest Loser while he and Rookie bonded.

Stephen started texting me pictures of this dog park. It was beautiful. Then he sent me a few pictures of Rookie standing, Rookie running, Rookie in the distance. And it dawned on me… was Rookie the only dog there? I asked. Nope. There are more, she’s just not playing with them.


They got home and Rookie was warn out. After Loser was over I asked for the details. Stephen told me all about how pretty the park was. There were trees and a track and strategically placed poopie bags that turned out to be poopie pieces of plastic that in a strange twist of events, turned out to be bags afterall.

And then he broke the news. Rookie isn’t good at making friends. She’s kind of a nerd dog. I couldn’t believe my ears. I was certain that this wasn’t true… that maybe all the other dogs were losers and she had no interest in playing their stupid games. I mean, she’s so cute! There’s no way that she’s not popular.

So I went. Sunday afternoon we loaded up the Murano and drove to the park. It was packed. Millions, maybe even trillions of dogs. We went in the gate and Rookie immediately started smelling butts. Atta girl. Stephen and I started walking and Rookie followed. We kept walking, she kept following. It was almost like she wasn’t aware that there were dogs around. It was sad. I was seeing it with my own eyes. My dog, the very dog I had raised since she was a wee little pup, was the nerdy kid that sits at the end of the lunch table alone. It was hard to see.

I ached for her. I ached for myself and my husband. What did we do wrong? Why was she such a social spazz? Maybe she just needed more practice. She really only has experience with my mom’s dog or the occasional visiting dog. Maybe she just needs to be around more dogs.

So we took her again on Tuesday. She was so excited. She ran to the car and fussed the whole way there. We got there and she ran into the park. I said a little prayer that maybe she could make a friend. Every now and then a group of dogs would come close and Rookie would get really excited. We’d encourage her, “Go Rookie! Go play!” And she’d run towards the dogs. As she’d start getting close she’d slow down and turn around and then sprint back to us. It was awful. I was embarrassed. I felt like all the other doggie parents were judging me. Like I’m some sort of over-protective mom that won’t let her dog play without permission. Or like I’m the type of mom to say, “Go have fun, but don’t get more than 20 feet away! It’s not safe out there.”

I’m so not that mom.

Stephen and I are unsure what to do at this point. We’ll continue to take her to the park and hope she’ll learn to make friends. We’ll encourage her to participate in all dog activities as long as they don’t involve the pit of watery mud.

This whole thing has gotten us thinking though. How is it that two incredibly awesome, super fun, socially fabulous people could raise such a dweeb? I mean, I guess it’s not that big of a deal. She’s just a dog.

But wait. I think there is something… someone… more important than Rookie coming. Something that could benefit from having a true social life. If we can’t socialize a dog, how the heck are we going to socialize a human? Let’s just pray that God has mercy on this child and He can somehow teach it to be normal despite our awful parenting.

Let’s all bow our heads and pray on that for a while.

Entry filed under: Chelsea, Pregnancy, Rookie, Stephen. Tags: , , .

Loser 9.11: The one where people start making up words & stuff. Seven Quick Takes – It’s a GOOD Friday

23 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Joy  |  April 1, 2010 at 7:57 am

    I think your plan of returning often to the park and encourage Rookie to play with others sounds great.

    And to the great amusement of many of our friends, despite both my husband and me being introverts ~ Elisabeth is an extrovert and will walk up to random children and start a conversation.

    I claim she is a well-loved toddler who thinks the world is a good place.

  • 2. Karen  |  April 1, 2010 at 8:04 am

    The weather here has been very good too, we will actually reach 82 degrees this afternoon. Woo hoo

    I am sure that Rookie will come around, may be she is just shy, at least you can take your dog to a park and let it run free, my dogs would be the bullies at the park. lol But I think she may be mad at you if she finds out that you did not put any pictures of her at the park on here, not even one.

    I am sure that you and Stephen will have a very sociable child, I don’t think he/she will stand a chance at not being out going and sociable.

  • 3. Paige  |  April 1, 2010 at 8:08 am

    I also think you should not take it so hard – as in give yourself a break here. Dogs, like children, absolutely have their own personalities. Some are extremely outgoing, some are shy, some are hyper and crazy (like mine) and some are so laid back you wonder if they’re still breathing.
    Personalities are something we are born with and while you can overcome shyness, etc., to a point I don’t think that parents necessarily teach their kids their personality. My husband and I are mostly shy and keep to ourselves, but our kid is out there with all the kids being social.
    You just gotta make the most of what you’re given.
    I do think things will improve the more you go, even if it improves slowly. Just try not to worry about it; it really doesn’t say anything bad about you!

  • 4. Sarah @ This Heavenly Life  |  April 1, 2010 at 8:11 am

    OR — she’s just very attached to you two, and confident within herself. Maybe she loves you guys better than any other dogs in the whole park. She identifies you as family, and sees no need to venture out.

    Says the mom who never wants her kids to venture out. Not more than 20 feet, anyway 🙂

  • 5. deiala  |  April 1, 2010 at 8:19 am

    It’s a great plan to take her to the park again. I think as time passes she’ll get used to the other dogs and find some friends.
    I’ve got a dog myself, a little Westhighland Terrier and she’s very timid. When she meets new dogs she generally hides behind me, waiting for the other dog to come and say hello to her. But she really likes meeting her “friends”… So don’t worry…

  • 6. Pippy  |  April 1, 2010 at 8:45 am

    Kids and dogs are different. At least I hope they are or Pipsqueak will be barking at people who come in our house from under the coffee table and… That would just be weird.
    Seriously though, dogs just want to be with their ‘pack’ and that’s you & Stephen! Maybe you could try playing with the other dogs too, so she gets it. It’s not a bad thing though, your child will have no trouble making friends!

  • 7. Kari Anne  |  April 1, 2010 at 9:09 am

    All will be fine and your child will not be the nerd at the end of the table eating alone. Your parenting skills as a dog mommy and as a live person mommy are different… I thought the same way you are now… And…almost 10 years later…my daughter is just like her me (with a little of her daddy thrown in…LOL). You and Stephen are going to be WONDERFUL parents (even though I don’t personally know the two of you…)!!

  • 8. Samantha  |  April 1, 2010 at 9:33 am

    We have the exact opposite problem with our dog. She’s a little TOO social; she loves to interact with anyone she sees – people or animals. (She’s even learned a time or two that not everyone and everything wants to play with her.) I agree with what some other people have said about pets, having their own personalities, and while you can do things to augment certain traits, they are still who they are. Same with babies, although I do think their environment and family plays a much larger role in their development. Doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with Rookie, and it certainly doesn’t mean you two are, or will be, awful parents. I think you’ll do just fine. 🙂

  • 9. abby  |  April 1, 2010 at 10:02 am

    LOL! That is too funny. At least your dog goes to the dog park. I’ve been too afraid to take my dog to the dog park because he doesn’t like most dogs. He growls and shows his teeth. I’m afraid of him biting another dog! What does that say of my parenting?? :\

  • 10. Nora  |  April 1, 2010 at 10:04 am

    Awww, sometimes I don’t think my dog Jack is great at making friends either. I think it depends on their size, my mood (I swear he feeds off my energy) and his mood!

    I’d assume, though I have no real idea, that socializing the baby will be a lot different and hopefully easier than socializing a dog. I’m sure you guys will be great parents 🙂

  • 11. Aunt Bonnie  |  April 1, 2010 at 10:41 am

    Uncle Dennis would tell you that socialization for dogs starts verrrry early. He used to do that with his bird dogs…..taking them out around other people and dogs when they were puppies. All the while he’d be saying….”socialization, gotta be social”. Just a thought. Not to worry about the Hurstling. I know there’s no chance of lack of socialization:)

  • 12. Kathleen  |  April 1, 2010 at 10:48 am

    David’s dog is like that, although it’s really not surprising considering she has a full-fledged anxiety disorder (diagnosed by me). She and David are so much alike sometimes it’s scary.

    My dog Cleo is the opposite. She plays with everyone, rolls on the ground and shows her belly, but goes off by herself if she feels like it. I think dogs pick up a lot of characteristics of their owners. That must mean Rookie is an anomaly…or is she? 😉

  • 13. Lauren From Texas  |  April 1, 2010 at 11:46 am

    Pancho doesn’t like making friends, but it’s because he doesn’t know he’s a dog; he thinks he’s a human. Leia is great at making friends. So obviously it’s not the parents’ fault. Just some kids (dogs) turn out differently than others. Being a nerd is not so bad. 🙂

  • 14. Kaitlynn  |  April 1, 2010 at 11:53 am

    Socializing a dog is WORK. You pretty much have to start as soon as they have their shots, or sometimes you can take them to puppy classes at the vet even before that. So socializing an adult dog could take more time. Just keep taking her and she’ll warm up! Not that I speak from experience. One of our dogs was born deaf and we socialized her a TON as a puppy. She’s still deathly afraid of strangers.

  • 15. Rachel  |  April 1, 2010 at 12:00 pm

    The Hurstling will be fine. 🙂 Arrange playdates, that will help too. And don’t be alarmed if she/he still balks occasionally when he/she is around other kids. I was convinced for a while that Caden was the weird kid in the corner… but I think he’s turning out ok. Keep taking Rookie to the park, but there are some dogs who just never want to paly with others.

  • 16. Kara  |  April 1, 2010 at 12:15 pm

    I wouldn’t worry about it! Dogs and kids are so not the same. By the sounds of it, Rookie is a well-behaved dog, which just goes to show that you’re not awful puppy-parents! At least she’s not attacking the other dogs, right? I’m sure she’ll make friends eventually. Just like kids – some are social butterflies and others take time to warm up to others.

  • 17. Taryn M. Peine  |  April 1, 2010 at 2:06 pm

    Truman is the biggest dork at the dog park too! Other dogs hate him and I don’t know why. The minute they approach him, he rolls on his back. Then Drew has to be like, “I’m the man who owns the cockapoo. Who spends his entire time at the dog park…on his back.”


    Hopefully for BOTH of us the social skills of our dogs will be no indication of the future social skills of our children…

  • 18. Heather  |  April 1, 2010 at 4:44 pm

    Aww–poor Rookie! Maybe she’s learning by observation

    If it makes you feel better Einstein does pretty much the same thing. Except he will sometimes actually try to get dogs to play with him and they don’t–that’s a true nerd–getting rejected by the cooler dogs.

    Then he’ll just go pee on everything in sight–at least three times and run around by himself in the middle of the field away from everyone and every dog

    I wonder how Rookie and the Hurstling will socialize together? You think they will get along?

  • 19. smile steady  |  April 1, 2010 at 9:32 pm

    I definitely think the answer to your problems is to start taking your newborn to the dog park from day one. There’s no way a child raised at the dog park could NOT be well-socialized, right? 🙂

  • 20. osarah  |  April 2, 2010 at 7:32 am

    I don’t know what kind of socializing Rookie had when she was a puppy, but if she didn’t go to dog parks and/or play with many dogs often, it’s logical that she’s acting this way. Give her some time, she’ll get over her shyness. You could also ask another dog owner if they could bring their dog over to sniff Rookie…I dunno…might help her.

  • 21. Kelly  |  April 2, 2010 at 9:33 am

    Keep taking her to the park! I would just try to hit it at less peak hours. It won’t be as overwhelming when there aren’t as many dogs. Maybe try a smaller one too, Riley can’t stand to not be able to see where I am, so I’m sure Rookie is the same especially since most of her life as been around humans!

  • 22. Jen Halligan  |  April 4, 2010 at 8:46 pm

    If you’re going to the park down on Bay Area I think it’s something in the park. Our Rookie has been to several dog parks to play and he has played his little heart out…we took him to the bay area park and he did nothing. Blame it on the park!

  • 23. Zburrows  |  April 7, 2010 at 1:38 pm

    Maybe rookie is just happier socializing with humans. The other dogs arent on her level.

    You are the furthest thing from a dweeb/dork

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Trackback this post  |  Subscribe to the comments via RSS Feed


April 2010


Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 39 other subscribers

My Button

Since the code doesn't work, save it as a jpg and be sure to link back to Roots & Rings.

Join Swagbucks!

Search & Win

%d bloggers like this: