From Tami: Resolutions

hind legs small puppies with black hair close-up filter

My adult daughter, visiting with her puppy while her husband is away, races to my room. She frantically knocks on the door, crying hysterically for help.

I am lying in bed when I hear her, knocking and crying, and in less than a second I am positive: Someone is dead. Or dying. But probably dead.

My heart stops, and I bolt out of bed. I start towards the door, and register her words. She’s still crying for me to help her.

Wait, help her? Okay, so it’s something wrong with her, which means no one is dead. Thank goodness. Some kind of emotional breakdown?

I open the door. She is not bleeding, and (hysteria aside) seems relatively un-broken-down. I am still unconsciously ruling out injuries when she says it. “Ma,” she cries, “the dog…”

Oh thank heavens. All of the humans in the house are safe and sound. Poor puppy though, she was only a year old.

“She’s sick!”

Waves of relief wash over me. The dog isn’t even dead. Tonight keeps getting better!

I start making plans: We take the dog to the veterinary ER, probably spend the night and a ton of money. That’s okay, we’ve done that with our dog before. We’ll get through this.

“She had diarrhea all over the room! The bed! Everything!”

I did not laugh out loud. I did not want to hurt her feelings when she was so clearly distressed. I was so relieved that I wanted to laugh out loud, grab the bleach and the gloves, and do a doggie-diarrhea-dance. Everyone was alive, and would remain that way. No one was spending the night in any sort of medical establishment. At that moment, life was so good.

In defense of the hysteria, it was like the dog painted the room. I know, disgusting.

The two of us went to work with gloves and bleach and garbage bags. The mattress was unsalvageable, but we managed to scrub the rest of the room into submission. It was a gross way to spend an evening, but a lot better than the alternatives I had been imagining.

I remember thinking, afterwards, how perspective and presentation change everything. Had she come to my room and simply announced that the dog had been sick everywhere, I can guarantee that I would not have been grateful for the news. And yet, after the panic set in and then abated, I felt like the luckiest woman in the world. I have people that I love, and pets that I love, and the people that I love have pets that they love, and all of them were safe and healthy (except for the diarrhea bit). So many blessings to count.

So my New Year’s Resolution is to count those blessings, even when they aren’t packaged or presented in the expected ways. After all, if everything about motherhood was expected, how boring would it get?

How about you? I know you all have some fantastic resolutions this year.

After all, you’re a SuperMom.


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