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Just A Thought 4-30
I can't break from my normal routine
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OK, I admit it. I’m a creature of habit, a person who follows a usually unvarying routine.
What caused this epiphany? My dog, Baby, did it. If she’s not looking adorable or defending the house from a rogue roll of toilet paper, she’s opening my eyes to a little-known fact about myself. She’s a very smart dog.
My back has been hurting. It’s a rhomboid muscle, by the way. I’m supposed to take it as easy as I can over the next few weeks in order to give it time to heal. Because of that, I made the decision to not give Baby her usually weekly bath. She’s easily 75 pounds. Instead, I would do my normal routine and leave that part off. I’ll spare you the exact details, but it includes washing her bed covers, disinfectant, vacuuming, giving her a bath, scrubbing and disinfecting the tub, and every couple weeks, trim her nails.
Baby doesn’t have a regular dog mat. I tried. She chews them up. I come home and there’s stuffing everywhere. She prefers human bed sheets and a blanket. I wash them at least once a week on bath night but sometimes, I wash them in the middle just because I know she likes it.
How do I know she likes it? She watches me put them in the washer and into the dryer. As soon as the dryer sounds, she’s standing by the dryer waiting. She follows me to her spot. As soon as I lay them down, she climbs onto them and snuggles. Absolutely adorable.
There’s a set order in which I conduct her bath routine. I rarely deviate from it. When I got to the part where I would normally ask her into the bathroom to take her bath, I didn’t. However, she walked into the bathroom and got in the tub. I just looked at her. My dog knows my routine. In this instance, I guess it’s our routine. I finished the routine and used an ice pack on my back.
To be completely honest, I knew before then that I was a creature of habit. I feel that doing things in a routine allows me to be more productive and not forget something. However, the fact my dog learned my routine amazed me. 
Yes, a break in my routine causes me to forget things. For instance, first thing I do after waking up in the morning is let my dog out. I give her water and food. Then, I water my tomato plants and begin taking care of my needs.
One morning I deviated. Baby received her care and I thought, “I’ll water the plants before I leave for work.” Those plants did not get watered that morning. I knew better. My life is full of knew-better, did-it-anyway moments.
Extreme and unexpected changes freak me out. I know because I’ve seen it happen. However, we won’t get into that right now. I’ll save that for later.
Standard reporter Lisa Hobbs can be reached at 473-2191.