While sitting at my computer this morning, I hear Frank say from the bedroom, “Oh, SCOUT! Ewww. No, no, girl. NO. Oh, that’s gross. Scout, that is SO gross. Oh, Scout, no…”
Now, I didn’t bolt out of my chair because, really, I didn’t want know what was going on. It was enough to know that it was gross and continued to be gross. Frank is a grown man and Scout is a tiny dog. I’m sure whatever was going on wasn’t that big of a deal.
“Scout, little girl no. Ewww. Gross, gross, gross, gross.”
After the fourth “gross” I ventured into the bedroom to find out what was happening.
“Everything okay in here?” I asked.
“No,” Frank said. “Scout just threw up all over the leather chair and it dripped in between the cushion and I had to clean it all out from there.”
“Yeah, that’s gross. But, you know, dogs throw up.”
He sighed and said, “That’s easy to say when you’re not the one cleaning it up.”
No sooner had the words left his mouth than I heard the sound of screeching brakes in my mind.
Wait, what? “…when YOU’RE not the one cleaning it up?”
Hold on there, skippy.
As the mom of two children and numerous pets, I have cleaned up more accidents than I care to recall. I have cleaned up stuff that has escaped from both ends of my children and my pets countless times. I have cleaned up messes from my children so startlingly gross and astoundingly massive that I couldn’t believe they actually came out of them.
The time the dog got into the Vaseline and then pooped green slime for two days whenever he walked? Oh yeah. That was super fun.
The time our son and Frank had the flu and both threw up in the bathroom but missed the toilet. The bathroom was such a mess, it looked like we had hired a special effects team. Oh yeah, I cleaned that up too, And I also had the flu. It was awesome.
The time the cat threw up a hairball that, I swear to God, looked like an alien creature being born. So vile, I still think I should have buried it in the backyard rather than throw it away. It’s probably still alive and terrorizing small towns. I’m not convinced it didn’t have teeth.
Add to that countless little kid poop and car seat accidents and spit up, all of which got up into my nostrils and lasted for days, and was left to me, because, in the words of my darling husband, “If I clean it up, I’ll throw up, too.”Oh, how quickly you forget when “you’re” not the one cleaning it up.
“Hey,” I said. “You want to rethink that last sentence about cleaning up a little throw up from a tiny Yorkie, or do you need a reminder of what I’ve cleaned up over the last 30 years? We can start with “a year’s worth of flu” on the bathroom floor.”
He stood there for a minute and thought about his response options. And then, he thought about the bathroom floor and said, “No, it’s okay. Just thinking about it makes me feel sick.”
Boom. My work here is done.
(PS. If you are lucky enough to have a four-legged best friend to clean up after, be sure to include them in your portraits. Or, treat them to a portrait session all their own. If they yack up something while in the studio, no worries…I’LL clean it up.)