My dog has taught me the best way to get through the pandemic: live in the now

Coronavirus has made me realize that taking joy in the simple things is what humans need most at this time

Don’t tell my husband, but I have a new love of my life. Since social distancing began in March, we spend pretty much every waking minute together, and every sleeping one, too. She’s black and grey and has a white chin; she weighs 22 pounds; she prances when she’s happy and puts her tail between her legs when she’s scared; and her name is Ramona, after the famous children’s book character, but also after Joey Ramone.

I never imagined becoming one of those dog-obsessed people who uses the moniker RamonasMom, but here I am: RamonasMom. We adopted Ramona last summer, and while I loved her from the beginning, the last six months have taken me from pleasantly engaged pet owner to unabashed, full-on Dog Parent. I’ve always worked from home, but pandemic has meant that Ramona and I are barely ever apart. We eat, sleep, work (I work), exercise, and play together, all day long. Whenever I do leave the house, she’s right by the door waiting for me to come back. She runs to grab a shoe or her stuffed taco to show me, and then jumps up and down, greeting me like I’m a soldier returning from war: “YOU’RE BACK! I HAVE SO MUCH TO TELL YOU!”

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