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Wednesday, March 6, 2013

With one leg in the air...

Years ago, several months after my husband gave me my little Bichon Frise puppy, Nappy, we took him with us to visit my husband's parents. They, too, owned a dog. A much older dog named Oceeto.  Oceeto was used to other animals being around him so we weren't worried about Nappy getting into fights with Oceeto, or Oceeto being mean to Nappy. We were right. Oceeto pretty much tolerated Nappy, and was very patient with Nappy's attempts to play with the much older and less energetic Oceeto. Nappy loved every minute of it. He was so excited to be around another dog! Little did I know, however, that this one visit would change my Nappy forever.

Up to that point in his little life, Nappy was...well...a little different, and that was fine. Specifically, Nappy pee'd different than other male dogs. While other dogs would lift their leg at anything that came in their path and "mark" their territory, Nappy would just crouch down a bit on the grass and pee- like a girl dog. It was dainty, not the " in all glory for all the world to see" type of thing that boy dogs do. I liked it this way.

When we brought Nappy home from his weekend visit to his "Uncle" Oceeto, I discovered to my horror that Nappy had been schooled in the correct way for boy dogs to pee. It was as though Oceeto had seen Nappy, laughed and said "Now Son, that will never do. Let me show you how the big boys do it."  Forever after that weekend, Nappy would proudly lift his leg as high as he could get it, balance on his other paw, and let out a stream as far as he could shoot it. And he DID shoot it- everywhere he could mark his territory, he would!  Oceeto took the innocence away from my little puppy that I could never hope to get back.

Why tell this story? Because tonight I am sending my son to Young Men's for the first time. Pit in my stomach? Check. I feel like I am sending him to Oceeto to be schooled in how men really do things. He spent an hour in his new older Sunday School class on Sunday and came back more sassy and sarcastic than ever. One hour, people! Imagine what 2 hours of that- every week-  is going to do!

I'm trying to think positive thoughts. "I've taught him well. He'll be fine." And "Young Men's is not the den of iniquity I am imagining it to be."  But all I can see is Nappy peeing with his leg up for all the world to see, forever more.

I think I'd just better buckle my seatbelt and hold on for the ride that is called "Teenager Hell", and hope that no one falls out along the way. And I guess just be glad that human boys don't pee with their leg in the air... at least that I know of!