White Dog sighed. "It is a constant up and down sometimes, momma. One minute everything is picture perfect and then the next it is time to call time out. It is exhausting!"
WD was experiencing the joy of leadership today, our first truly "normal" day since Taiko joined us. He is getting comfortable and as expected, is starting to explore his boundaries and place in the White Dog Army. He is not being mean but he is unaware and in his ignorance has made some gaffes today. But he has also made some connections as he studies and learns more about his siblings and their personalities.
WD and I sat together near tears when Taiko shifted to his side so that he could lie with his back pressed along Nuka's during the post-breakfast nap. It happened so naturally and the two rested peacefully until Michael stomped through the room and startled Ty.
YoYoMa and Taiko have had no issues and in fact, seem to rather enjoy hanging out together...guy-to-guy, none of that cuddling stuff, please. But both rested on the sun porch and stood shoulder-to-shoulder as Ty sang in his first Chorus to the Mailman.
Taiko and Oso are having some subtle conversations about limits. Taiko does not like our littlest near-sided boy bumping into him and Oso is not pleased that his new brother is hogging so much of HIS dad's time. There was some grunting across the day and little torments played out...Oso choosing to nap (stretched to such length and breadth that it had to be uncomfortable) in the new bigger bed we got to accommodate Ty's size...and Ty running over to Oso's favorite water dish every time the little one headed for a drink (there are dishes in every room).
When Oso talked Puff into standing in the hall doorway to form a gate and Taiko was blocked from the living room, WD had to step in and push her way through, scattering the conspirators.
The two boys are comical as they parade past Steve and cut in front of the other in their attempts to out shine the other. Steve has done a great job of picking up Oso and letting him know he is irreplaceable and then wrapping his arm around Taiko to give a belly rub and scratch an ear.
I reassured my Leader of the Pack that things will settle down quickly and praised her for how amazingly well the integration has gone. "But really," I told her, "I would be more worried if there was none of this posturing. This shows everyone is getting comfortable enough to let their true feelings out. The boys are just testing each other, you know how boys are. Remember when you thought Quinn and Yo would NEVER be friends? This is much easier than that."
"I am still not putting up with any meanness in MY Army," WD said firmly. "Finding a balance is great but everyone will show love and respect to all of the others, by dog!" "Just keep the tender picture of Nuka and Taiko resting together in your head because that is how things are going to be...no one has been mean, only stubborn and petulant...it has only been five days after all...and you ARE all Eskies"