We woke up Saturday morning having barely been able to sleep the night before. Today would be the day. The day our little bundle of woofs would arrive. We were so excited. We made a plan to distract ourselves and keep us busy all day long until he came home. We set up everything he would need, watched training videos all day long and kept going for walks and trying to enjoy the sun until little Moe was finally here.
At 4:55pm our doorbell rang and there was a little crate waiting right in front of it. We opened the door, waved to the nice lady that had dropped him off, keeping her social distance from us, and looked expectantly at the little gray and navy blue box that appeared to be moving of its own volition.
We picked up the crate and brought him inside. Armed with treats and smiles we opened the door to see the newest addition to our family. He was shaking and scared, but as he started to smell the chicken liver goodies we had waiting he gained courage and marched out of his confinement and into my lap. The fear didn’t last long and he seemed to recognize that the three of us belonged to each other almost immediately.
Then the anxiety kicked in. Not his, ours. We were so excited for a puppy that I don’t think we’d begun to calculate the change that was about to occur in our lives. And most importantly we were worried we might just break him. But as our excitement quickly outweighed our anxiety the day flew by and then it was time for bed.
We knew we were going to crate train Moe since before he even arrived on our doorstep and we knew that with some puppies crate training is not easy. In our silly little heads, we naively assumed Moe would just be the most chill, easiest dog and that he would just take to his crate immediately. We had introduced him to the crate throughout the day, but when it came time to sleep…all hell broke loose.
After his crying became too painful and Domi and I too exhausted, I grabbed a blanket and laid next to him, my hand in the crate, his paw on my finger and he became peaceful. I spent another night on the floor next to him and then another. Three days in, I looked at Domi and said, I just can’t sleep on the floor anymore—my body hurts. And I knew at some point we would have to endure his cries and I knew at some point he would become used to his new sleeping den, it was just a question of who would crack under the pressure first.
On day four, as the sleep deprivation really started to settle in, I came downstairs for my shift to watch our own little nutcase so Domi could take a break and get some work done. The second I rounded the corner and saw my hubby, we both started talking at the same time. What Domi and I had both realized is that not only had Moe approached the crate with fear but so had we. We were so nervous that we would hear him cry, so anxious that we would lose sleep forever that we all entered bedtime on high alert.
We decided it was time to approach that differently. It was time the three of us all bonded with this crate. And it was time for Domi and me to change our attitudes. We had spent four days telling everyone in our lives how much we adored our little brown and white bundle of love, but how awful of a sleeper and a crier he is. We had continuously put it out into the Universe that he is the single-worst sleeping puppy that has ever walked the planet and then we came to our sense and changed our minds.
It was time to have a talk with Moe and a talk with the Universe. I held my fur baby in my arms and looked him straight in his big brown eyes. “Hi, Moe Moe. You know, I am so proud of you, right? You did this big thing coming to a new family and a whole new place and you’re doing an amazing job.” He looked back at me, eerily calm, as if he really was understanding what I was saying. I continued, “I know everything in the world is new right now, but that will change and things will get less scary every day. I love you so much and more than anything I am so proud of what a good sleeper you are.” And then I convened with God/the Universe/whatever higher power is out there. I closed my eyes and pictured Moe sleeping sweetly in his crate. Loving his new den. Being snuggled up and happy and finding it as his place of refuge from this new scary world. And then I repeated my new mantra. “Moe is such a good sleeper. Moe sleeps through the night. It’s amazing how much Moe loves his crate. I am so grateful that Moe sleeps so well at night.”
Then that night we approached bedtime differently. We smiled and spoke with joy when we saw the crate and it was time for bed. We got out yummy treats, we turned on a fun TV show that we’ve learned Moe likes to watch and in he popped, with such ease, straight into his crate. “I love you, Moe.” I said, “sweet dreams!” I gave him one more tap on his paw and slowly backed up repeating my prayer from earlier in the day. I climbed under the covers. Moe watching me expectantly. We both eyed each other and I intensified my mantra on repeat in my mind. I heard a few peeps of protest and then, silence as he plopped down head on his paws snuggled like a bug in a rug.
I closed my eyes repeating my fervent sleeping prayer and the next time I woke up, there was our little man, completely passed out, paws in the air, sleeping like an angel. I may have shed a tear or two out of excitement.
I didn’t mind if he whined because he had to go out in the middle of the night, which of course, he did. He’s still a little one and if I can’t even hold it all night, how could he? But every time I took him out and we returned to the bedroom he happily plunked down in his crate and went straight back to dreamland.
Domi and I looked at each other in the newfound silence of our bedroom, with the biggest smiles on our faces. Moe wasn’t the problem, we were. No shocker there. But as soon as we changed our mind and approach the Universe moved mountains to make our little guy comfortable.
I am a strong proponent of manifestation…I really believe that the law of attraction is out there waiting to serve us if we just have the right thoughts and the right approach. We are so often focused on the negative that we create more and more of it in our minds and then more and more of it manifests in our daily lives, but if we change all of those negative thoughts into positive ones our world can look entirely different.
Think of all the ways you can change a negative thought into a positive one. Then try it. Try changing the way you approach the same negative thought from the positive side and see what changes in your life. See what you attract. Change your situation, or perhaps, just your puppy’s sleeping habits.
Especially during these uncertain times, we can work on this. We have so many negative thoughts every day surrounding quarantine and the future and what might happen, but maybe we can work on those thoughts. Maybe, even if it’s just one a day, we can shift our perspective and slowly, with practice, finding the positive thought will become easier than resorting to the negative. You can do it. I believe in you.
Happy Friday friends. I am sending so much love and so much sleep to you all. Can’t wait to hug my friends again, and after manifesting a potty-trained dog, I’m working on manifesting that next. XOXOXO, CAMDW