Helping one's children make decisions about higher education can be an intensive, multi-faceted experience. First there's the whole decision on whether to even attend college. In The Boy's case, that decision was easy. Of course he was going to college. Then came the fun part.
But I'm not here to write about those experiences right now. I'm here to talk about our dogs.
The tale begins with a trip. See, the whole select-and-apply-to-college game involved many trips. Trips up and down the East Coast, first to visit schools and then, if desired, to return for an audition. Ayup. When your offspring wishes to study music theatre, another layer of acceptance must be earned.
Sometimes all three of us traveled. Other times only The Boy and I went. Practicality dictated. The times Wendy was left holding down the fort, she was kept company by our dogs. Back then we had three: Cosine, Detail and Dudley. They all joined her in bed at night, but Dudley provided special comfort as only a basset hound can. It was during one of those trips that she schooled him on the joys of sleeping under the covers.
I've never minded dogs on the bed. I share their pack mentality and enjoy the snuggles. But Cosine and Detail always slept at the foot of the bed on top of the doggie sheet spread out for their pleasure. Only humans were allowed between the sheets. Dudley played along with the dogs-at-the-foot-of-the-bed routine until he was introduced to the greener pastures found elsewhere. Like under the covers with his head on Wendy's pillow.
As soon as I saw him napping there, overwhelming cuteness exuding from every relaxed basset pore, resistance was futile. As long as he stays on Wendy's side of the bed.
Time passed. Exit Cosine and Detail, enter Pixie. We lucked into Pixie via a rescue group. She's almost a complete physical opposite from our springers: petite and short haired. Somewhere along the roads she traveled before landing with us, she learned the joy of under-the-covers sleeping. She burrows with authority, not bothering to ask permission, just making herself right at home.
I've gone from being a dogs-belong-on-top-of-the-covers person to one who thrills when Pixie crawls under and nestles in the crook of my knees. I am her fool.
Now we sleep bracketed by our dogs, all of us under the covers, a tangled mass of warm bodies asnuggle. King-size beds were made for families like ours.