Most days I sit at my computer and keyboard one-handed. It’s taken me years of diligent daily training to reach my current level of proficiency with each individual hand. My right-hand is deft, but my left is almost as good. I know what you’re thinking. Why on earth would anyone train themselves to type with one hand?
More than a decade ago my family decided to adopt a puppy. It took seven years, four hamsters, and about five Betta fish before we were ready to fill the huge emotional void that the death of our dog Pippin left. Any dog following in Pippin’s paw prints was going to have to be extraordinary. The search was on. Breeders were contacted, classifieds were scoured, and puppies were cuddled, but none seemed to be the “it” dog. Finally after months of searching, a cock-a-poo breeder forty miles away called me. Her dog Chloe was due to have a litter soon. Having pick of the litter was a new experience for my family and we impatiently waited for the breeder’s call. The call finally came a few days after Christmas, “One little boy and three little girls,” she said.
A mother’s demeanor can be a good indicator of what her children’s temperament might be like. These were the words of a veterinarian, not a child psychologist, although they’re probably not far from the truth as far as humans go, too. If that statement were true, then all four of Chloe’s puppies were sure to be little angels.
The breeder was aware of our preference for a female and preferably a tea cup-sized one at that. We knew our decision was not going to be an easy one, but after multiple visits to the puppies, one little personality stood out. The adorable females had lovely dark coats, but it was the lone buff-colored male, nicknamed Brutus by the breeder, that caught our attention. Brutus was so named, because he was the largest of the litter and because he clumsily climbed over his little sisters to find the most abundant source of milk. How could we not fall in love with the little one who was born with a double chin, who played tug-of-war with artificial plants, and who did such ferocious kick backs that he’d kick his poop right off the piddle pad? Our decision was made. So much for the little tea cup-sized female, Brutus aka Romeo was ours.
The moment we brought Romeo home we started training him to ring a bell that hung from a family room door and opened to our backyard. Our intention was to train him to let us know when he needed to use the outdoor facilities. In hindsight, Romeo really trained us right from the start. That clever pup quickly learned if I ring it, they will come, for it didn’t take him long to figure out that he could also ring the bell for more food! As he is approached at the door, he either remains at the door or he runs back to the kitchen wagging his tail in hope!
So I finally come to the point of my story as to why I keyboard with one hand. It’s obviously because Romeo has trained me well. Most days when I am at my computer Romeo comes and sits by my chair and whimpers ever so quietly. I bend over and pick him up and put him on my lap so he can snuggle in my arms. I’ve even fashioned a sling that goes around both of us so that much of his weight is supported by it. I may not keyboard as fast or accurately when he is in my arms, but I wouldn’t trade these moments with my little muse for all the left hands in the world.