I didn’t want a puppy.

Don’t get me wrong… I think they are adorable. But to me, getting a puppy is right up there with having a baby… and we’ve already got four of those! I believe that dogs are family members. They need and deserve attention and love. True, you don’t need someone to watch them every time you leave their side, but the responsibility for them is just about as great as that for a child.

I grew up with pets – a dog and a cat… and a couple of birds that mysteriously disappeared long before the cat did. 🙂  And though I love other people’s dogs, in my mind, I’m not necessarily pet-owner material.

This month, our family brought home a beautiful little weimaraner pup, Basil. She is precious and fiesty. And of course the novelty has already worn off with the kiddos. It’s been a trying two weeks for me, adjusting to caring for another being, and getting up all hours of the evening after 10 years of sleepless nights had just come to an end, but even moreso allowing something that I really did not want into my life — in a big way.

I’ve been trying to work through the reason why this has had such a massive effect on me emotionally. (Afterall, my husband has taken on the majority of the training.) I agreed to getting the dog. Although I didn’t want a puppy, if there ever were a child who needed a dog it’s my Lola. Sparing too much detail, I’ll just say that Mike and I knew that it was time for Lola to welcome a four-legged friend into her heart and our home. I said yes out of pure love for our daughter, and wanting the best for her.

With a more level-head than the first few days, I’ve realized something profound. I have worked my entire married life to make our home a true reflection of me (and Mike, too 🙂 ) I love to fill my physical spaces with beauty and surround myself with objects that I love. Being in this space feeds my soul. It sparks my creativity. It makes me happy. But being in this space that I love, with the people I love takes the experience to a new level. Allowing this puppy into my life and my space does not need to define me. And it doesn’t need to make me unhappy. I can choose happiness. All of the things I love are STILL HERE in this space. This is just a new layer, and I can choose to look at it as beauty.  Isn’t an act of love one of the highest forms of beauty anyway?

We are all faced with different things we may not necessarily find beautiful in our lives. But I encourage you to seek out the beauty within it. Choose to be happy not in spite of, but alongside whatever you’re living with that may not feed your soul at the moment. Choose love, and happiness will naturally follow.

I’m sure that Basil will grow to have a huge place in my heart. And I’ll look back and laugh at all the crying I did over her. But today, I hope that sharing my experience of her arrival proves to be a lovely reminder that true beauty often lies in the simple shift of perspective.