Moms know gross.
If you had told me 20 years ago that I would eventually stop being a sympathetic vomiter, I would have laughed in your face. I was definitely not the girl you wanted holding your hair back over the toilet at a frat party. Now, I can say proudly, I have had baby puke in my mouth, and not once returned the favor. I’ve had handfuls of diarrhea leaking out diapers, laps wet from pee, caught regurgitated, slimy green beans before they hit the table, cleaned out a week old thermos forgotten in a locker and even managed to expel chunky vomit from my car without dry-heaving. The bar has certainly been raised in the gross tolerance department.
And thank goodness, because it was good training for having a stubborn, ornery, aging dog. It has already been established how much I love our 13 year-old Chelsea when I wrote about her in my post, Dog Days. However, much like being a parent, there are moments that I really could do without. Last fall, for instance, Chelsea really enjoyed a good, aggressive romp in our woods hunting for deer poop. The mission – to find as many piles as possible, drop to the ground (face first, I might add) and roll her entire body in unbelievably rancid smelling crap. We had to stand on the back deck and keep watch, shout at her if it appeared she had discovered a particularly potent patch. Sometimes there was a break in rank, someone would get lazy and forget to keep a watchful eye. She would slink back in the house, steaming with stench and be led directly to the mud room to be showered. I can not understand why you would want a face full of deer poop. Perhaps it was simply a power play, because without fail, it would happen at the most inopportune moments. The worst morning by far was a work day. I was dressed in high-heeled black boots, a perfect pink knit dress and ready to walk out the door when the smell over-powered me. It was definitely deer. I hauled her into the shower and bathed her in my heels, trying my best not to soak myself in the process.
Another unfortunate encounter caught me off guard about a week ago. Again, as luck would have it, on a work morning. (I seriously think Chelsea is just mad at me for leaving her in the morning.) It isn’t deer season, and yet when she came inside I recognized an unpleasant odor. Remnants dangled from her haunches, matted in long red hair. She was obviously having bowel issues, and there really wasn’t any time to bathe her. I was dressed and ready to go. So I did what any mom quick on her feet would do. I grabbed the nearest pair of scissors and simply cut the dried mass out. Snip, snip down the backs of both her legs. DW didn’t appear to agree with my method of clean-up, unfortunately, and called it lazy. I called it necessary.
The alarm whined at six o’clock yesterday morning. I procrastinated for a bit, but the prospect of having an hour to myself on a Saturday morning was too tempting. The shower was hot and energizing. The phantom smell of caffeine called me, quickening my pace. The girls and DW slumbered soundly as I made my way down the stairs, anxious to spend some time with my favorite mug and read blog posts.
At the top of the stairs my nostrils stung. I couldn’t quite place the smell. After I made it to the landing, the source was apparent and overwhelming. Dog diarrhea covered my entire living room floor; piles and piles of oozing green sludge. Some of it didn’t fit on the 5 x 7 rug and hung over the sides. It was clear too, that she had walked through it, because thick dog-prints ran rampant throughout the entire first floor. The wood planks were caked with remnants of a sick and frantic dog. She must have circled through the house a few times in panic. It was everywhere, as if our septic tank had suddenly exploded. There was no way I was going in alone. I quickly ran back upstairs to retrieve reinforcements.
“DW! DW!” I said, “You won’t believe what your dog did downstairs!” (Because, of course, she is only my dog when she is healthy and easy.)
There was mumbling and limited movement, “I’ll clean it up when I get up.”
“I don’t think you understand, it’s bigger than a little bit of pee.”
His head turned to me, “How bad is it?”
“Well – there’s shit everywhere.”
DW quickly got up and started for the stairs. I grabbed his arm, “Be prepared to just throw out the carpet.”
He smiled, “I’m sure that won’t be necessary. I don’t need to use the “scissor” method.”
I let go of his arm and watched him descend into the trenches.
“OH MY GOD!” DW exclaimed.
The carpet is rolled up tightly outside waiting for trash pick-up.
(And believe me, our wood floors have never been so clean.)