Dear Mentally Challenged Maynard:
I’m not blaming you. I realize that you have a disability. The first few years of your life were pretty tough. You fell off the counter as a puppy and were in that little puppy coma. And then you ate those pills which brought on another little puppy coma. It’s not your fault. But even the mentally challenged can live very full and rewarding lives of self reliance. You’re too young to remember the show Life Goes On but there was this kid in it, Corky, and he had Downs Syndrome and even he was able to go to a regular high school and have a job and an apartment and he eventually fell in love with that girl who also had Downs Syndrome. I’m not saying that love is in the cards for you but certainly you can handle a few very simple tasks that will bring more independence to your life. Namely, going to the bathroom outside. I know you’re capable of doing this because I’ve seen you. You’ve even given me the very subtle sign of sitting down to indicate that you need to be let out. I’m proud of you for achieving this. But I think you may be using your disability, and your cuteness, as a crutch because every time I see a little pee stain on the new carpet and I look over at you, you look back with very large eyes and you cock your head to the right in that very cute way that makes your tongue lollop about. It’s adorable and I forgive you but then you do it again an hour later.
To help you out on this road to independence I’m setting a few goals for you. We’re starting small and I don’t want you to feel like you have to achieve them all tonight but at least if you’re aware of them and working on them, you’re making progress.
1.) Only get out of the bed if you need to. I know how hard it is to get into that bed. It’s pretty high. I have trouble myself. You know that if you get out of the bed you can’t get back in unless I help you up. So instead of hopping down and then waking me up when you want back in, why don’t you just stay there if you don’t need to leave.
2.) Come up with a different sign for having to go out. Like maybe barking. Sometimes when you sit down I can’t tell if you have to go or if you’re just tired.
3.) Do not pee or poop inside the house. Because if I have to get up at 3:30 in the morning to let you out for the 3rd time in 4 hours and on my way to opening the door for you step on another piece of poo one more time I promise that I will not forgive you and will send you to a home for retarded dogs.
I don’t want to sound paranoid but I would be a fool if I didn’t consider the possibility that you’re doing it on purpose. You are, after all, related by marriage to the cats who are trying to kill me because I'm the only thing standing in their way of world domination. I would hate to think, after all I’ve done for you, that you would have intentionally left that poo at the base of the stairs and then woken me up to let you out, knowing full well that I would step in it. If I find out that this is the case you can bet that no amount of adorable tongue lolloping will save you.
We only have two more weeks together. Let’s make the most of it.