Skip to main content

My Biggest Challenge

Divorce changes you. It challenges you. 

Divorce flips your world upside down and takes from you everything you've grown to know. For me, it was a home and a little family. That little family was 50% furry, four-legged pups whom I miss dearly. Walking away crushed me, but it was for the best for those sweet ones...and I knew that there was some special dog waiting for me.

When I finally felt settled into my new place in January, I decided that I needed to find that special one. I didn't look for him. He came to me. He popped up on a Facebook post and that face...oh, that face. I just had to meet him.

The picture that started it all.
On a cold Tuesday afternoon in January, I drove to Lifeline Animal Rescue where a sweet white and black dog was walked out to me. "HERE HE IS!", I thought. Well, he could have given 2 shits that I was there. Barely acknowledged me. 

"He's a little...humpy", the girl said. She explained that she didn't want to tell me that via email as she assumed it wouldn't go over well. I'm sure emailing someone to inform them a rescue dog they're interested in humps all the time is the same thing as getting a dick pic in the dating world. Not cute...I get it. I. GET. IT.

Brucey and I went for a walk around the block. Again, he gave zero shits about me although he did manage to take a massive dump in the middle of it which was awesome since I didn't have any poop bags with me, "thanks, dude". I couldn't get a good gauge on how things were going. He just spent time smelling everything and taking in the world. I had a thought that maybe he was a total asshole and not the sweet dog I was looking for. Turns out, he isn't an asshole at all...he just didn't get out much.

Once we got back to the shelter and they took him back to his cage, I asked how long he had been there. The girl looked in his records and said, "2009". If you're like me and not accepting the fact you're getting older, 2009 was totally yesterday, right? WRONG. That dog had lived in that shelter for 6 and a half years after being found one morning years ago abandoned and chained up there.

I left there with so much to think about. What was I getting into? I needed time to sleep on it and decide if this was going to work.

It took about 12 hours. I couldn't get him out of my head. I couldn't stop thinking about that face. How in the hell was he there for so long? Am I a complete moron for taking a chance on this weird, shitting, humping, beast of a dog? I had no idea. All that I kept thinking was that he had been sitting at Lifeline for as long as I had been with my ex: 6 and a half YEARS. Something kept telling me that he was simply waiting for me. 

On January 20th, I drove back to Lifeline to get my boy. I remember getting out of the car and moving something to the backseat while getting that feeling I was being watched. I looked up and there were a good 10 people crammed into this small lobby who were all looking at me. When I walked in, I realized that I wasn't just getting my dog, but I was picking up Lifeline's longest running resident and many of the volunteers who loved Brucey through his time there came to say goodbye. Cue. The. Tears.

I paid the $16 they were charging for him, they handed me the novel of paperwork that accumulates for a dog that lives that long in a shelter and we walked out of that place together...I swore to him he'd never have to go back again.

Right after I adopted him...he stunk.
She wasn't joking about his humping and that can be a problem with other dogs. I joke that he never learned manners...who could being in a cell for so many years? He's humpy and stubborn as a mule. He snores. He sometimes pees in the house. He's not easy. He pushes my buttons and makes me mad. He follows me around everywhere and sometimes I want to punch him the face (I don't). Honestly, he's not the dog I thought I'd get.

There's nothing more lovely than watching a dog see geese for the first time in his life...
But, OH! Oh how I love my Brucey! My sweet boy. He's tolerant and patient and has shown me grace. He's tried and true. He's a mess, but he's my mess.

See, he's been my biggest and most unexpected challenge, but he's the best decision I've ever made. They tell me he's a "senior" dog at about 9 years old, so my goal is to do as much making up for all he missed out on in his life.  He deserves the best parts of me and what I can give him. He's waited for so long for it, after all.


Popular posts from this blog


 “I don’t know if I should congratulate you or console you.” - Craig “How about both?” - Me This was a conversation in our kitchen earlier this week. After a year and a half of weekly therapy, I had my last session with my therapist Tuesday. Not because I was over it or because it wasn’t working or because he retired. Nope. Because we got to a place where we could both say I’ve got the tools I need to move on. I have to say that there is no timeline for therapy and every situation is unique. I moved on from intensive therapy with my therapist because that it was worked for ME. I am certainly no expert and I have a feeling this isn’t the end of my therapy forever, but I do know that my experience with the right person allowed me to heal in ways I literally never thought possible. And it gave me the experience of a healthy “goodbye”. I was never prepared for that, so when we set an end date (not-so-coincidentally my Nanna’s birthday), it was hard to process. No one talks about


A friend sent this video to me and when I watched it, I was struck more by the feelings it brought up around the content than the story itself.  Christen Reighter's story is an interesting and frustrating insight into what it means to NOT want a child. I invite you to watch this. Her experience is not unique and needs to be talked about. Even if you have kids. Or want them. What struck me most was what she says during her TedTalk: "I have believed having children was an extension of womanhood, not the definition." Truth is, I've been struggling with this lately. Not the fact that I'm longing for children. I'd be fibbing if I said there is a very tiny part of me that wonders what this will feel like when I get to the end of life. HOWEVER. That feeling isn't strong enough for me to want to find out. I don't feel like having children should be thought of as a "keeping the fingers crossed" kind of situation. If you aren't sure you'l


I have a little secret. Today marks 30 days since my last drink**. I had attempted a 30-day alcohol-free period in January of 2018 which ended up being, arguably, one of the most challenging years of my life. I made it 26 days miserable days and it all ended because Brucey , my beloved rescue dog, died while I was traveling to Miami for an event. This is when I discovered that Walgreen's sells wine (what?!).  I look back at my first alcohol-free attempt and I realize that I wasn't really set up for success. Hindsight and all that... Not only did I try to detox on January 1st, but I was also newly ramping up training for my big bike adventures AND I decided to try my hand at 30-days of Yoga with Adriene . All of these things independently are (and were) really good things. Healthy. Mindful. Etc. Etc. However, I went into that period of time looking at not drinking as punishment. This dry spell was needed more than ever. With COVID hitting a year ago (that's another post in i