Sonia Dog's head peeks over that back of the couch as soon as Fiorella finishes her Shredded Wheat. She knows what's coming, that Mommy will place the bowl on the floor, call her to "come," then tell her to "stop," then invite her to lick up the milk remaining in the breakfast bowl, which doggie does with relish. Next, Mommy approaches her with a paper towl in one hand to wipe up the splashes on the floor and two Milkbones in the other hand as Baby's reward for being a good dog and drinking her milk.
Sonia likes ceremonies. Patterned activities reassure us all. We like to know what is going on, what our role is, and what the outcome will be--that if we plug in the computer, it will open up, that if we are nice to people, theywill be nice to us. But there are always exceptions, deviations from our expectancies that we have to handle on our own. And we can. Fight the good fight.