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By Mireya Navarro

Stepdog is the hilarious and heartwarming story of a lady who has ultimately met the fellow of her dreams—and the puppy of her nightmares. 

Winner of the June 2015 Elle Readers Prize

Lots of canine devour footwear, chunk humans, break furnishings . . . yet Eddie attempted to damage a marriage.

After greater than 3 a long time of satisfied unmarried womanhood, Mia Navarro wasn’t fairly trying to switch her courting prestige. the assumption of being a step-anything to somebody was once overseas to her, whatever she by no means thought of. . . . until eventually she fell in love with Jim and agreed to marry him. because it seems, the wedding is beautiful remarkable, the stepkids have been, good, commonplace pre-teens, the elements in l. a. ideal. yet lifestyles isn't spotless. The spots belong to Jim’s mutt, Eddie. Possessive and jealous, Eddie behaves like Jim’s mistress—if a mistress may bark and compete for area on his beloved’s lap. As time is going on, a full-on struggle ensues. Mia slams the door in Eddie’s face, cordons off the home into puppy- and wife-territories, and leaves the again door open . . . via, er, twist of fate, after all. She even attempts to depart Eddie at the back of in California whilst she and Jim all of sudden relocate to manhattan.  But in spite of everything, it’s transparent that no longer even a spouse can come among guy and puppy. As Eddie a while, Mia softens, and as with all new kinfolk suffering to combination, the 2 needs to make peace with one another. Ultimately, Stepdog is a victorious tale approximately discovering love at an unforeseen level in existence and the various unexpected obstacles—not purely of the four-legged variety—that can get within the means at the street to fortunately ever after.

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I agreed I had equipped up a wall that bought larger and better the fewer i used to be depended on. I didn’t know the way to realize that belief. He didn’t comprehend why i used to be so unsatisfied. yet we either desired to retailer the wedding. He too desired to bury his anger and guard the aid, thought, and recognize, he informed me. He too desired to recapture the eagerness and “the non secular excessive a real assembly of our souls provides. ” the belief of residing aside was once frightening after we first mentioned it. The test may well pass extraordinarily incorrect. however the danger appeared inside of appropriate degrees and we started to hot as much as the concept that of separate houses as a manageable alternative. As we attempted to choose what to do, the days referred to as. They sought after me again in manhattan. 9 Somebody’s bought to move the decision got here from the pinnacle editor in command of breaking undesirable information. as a result of layoffs within the newsroom, she informed me, they sought after me again in big apple besides one other reporter within the Times’s L. A. bureau. the days was once doing away with a few hundred or so newsroom jobs. i used to be approximately 12 months in need of maxing out on my nationwide bureau rotation, frequently approximately 5 years, so in fact I feared the worst. They knew i used to be married with younger stepkids and couldn’t simply choose up and go away. Didn’t they take into accout this used to be precisely what compelled Jim to surrender? The paper was once now providing buyouts. may still I take the money and run? I didn’t wish the editor at the line to mince phrases. “Do you men wish me to give up? i have to be aware of. ” “No, we'd like you to stay,” she reassured me. i used to be within the yard, the place I were interpreting clips for a narrative, and Jim was once upstairs within the den, operating. “Jiiimmm! ” I screamed at his workplace window as I hung up. He got here down and that i advised him the scoop. “It’s now not an entire surprise,” he acknowledged soothingly. “Let’s speak throughout the suggestions. Pull up stakes and move, or remain. There’s freelancing. you could examine issues regarding Hispanic concerns. It doesn’t must be in journalism. ” We tackled specialist matters first since it used to be more straightforward than speaking approximately us. yet I didn’t enjoy that he started out the dialogue via suggesting i'll depart my task. I wasn’t performed with my profession but. yet I additionally knew i used to be previous the degree of the pro taking priority over the non-public. I knew I’d do no matter what was once top for our marriage. That evening, as i attempted to go to sleep, i presumed, Wait a minute . . . We had simply been passed a present! This was once the transitority separation we so desperately wanted, with no the guilt. After toying with the belief of preserving families, we now confronted a complete varied set of techniques. the youngsters weren't little anymore. Arielle and Henry have been progressing via highschool. the wedding wanted a breather. Wouldn’t a flow to ny permit Jim and that i to stick jointly no matter if aside? We have been specialists at long-distance love. It appeared counterintuitive, however it used to be an answer. i may continue the activity and the wedding. humorous how the days facilitated the wedding by way of shifting me to L. A. and now it was once coming to rescue us by means of taking me—and ultimately Jim—back to manhattan.

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