I didn’t want to leave Zoey, the miniature dachshund I had adopted from a pet store in February 2009, for whole days at a time to go to work, though I knew my mother would be dog-sitting her. I especially did not want to leave her the first Monday morning after I brought her home, in part because I prefer weekends to Mondays, and second, I wanted to hang out with my new friend.
My mother called me at work that afternoon. She said she was downstairs ironing, and Zoey had followed her, like she had been all day because I wasn’t there. Zoey was under my bed and wouldn’t come out. “She misses you,” my mother said, explaining that Zoey was whining and whimpering.
“I miss her, too,” I said.
My mother had advised me to spend as much time with her as I could, so we could bond.
That wasn’t a problem for me. My problem was letting go. I kept thinking about her all day while I was at work. I realized what kind of mother I would be if I had a child, but I’m not married and not prepared to handle single motherhood. So Zoey, over the next few months, became my girl. I spoiled her with toys and teddy bears from the pet store, treats, things to chew and doggie clothes, which she, of course, will not wear. She slides out of them, or she’ll roll or run or whatever it takes to be free and herself again.