This is Abby (the human) and Lulu (the dog).
That pic is from 3 months ago, which means Lulu is now 45x bigger.
He is not a labradoodle, after all.
He is either a small, black bear, or a moose, or a husky, feral, adorable kindergarten boy named something that ends with -y. Like Kenny. Or Jeffy. Or Tommy.
You know the one. He’s the kid who has NO IDEA how long his limbs are. He’s Bambi on the ice, made from 73% sweetness and 27% flailing. He takes corners too fast and runs into walls. He eats with pure joy and creates a colossal mess. Never did he ever finish a meal without spaghetti sauce or jelly to his eyebrows and wiping his face on his shirt.
That is Lulu.
Abby’s chore is loading the dishwasher, and Lulu is her helper. He’s a toddler — an enormous, almost 6 month old toddler — so he still likes to help with chores. Abby puts the dishes in, and Lulu prewashes every single one with his tongue. He is very thorough.
Last night, Lulu’s collar caught on the lower basket as he was enjoying his task, and, as he pulled back, the entire basket came with him. Loaded with dirty plates and bowls. Flatware in their smaller containers attached to the whole contraption.
Lulu flipped out.
A dish monster had attacked his neck and wouldn’t let go. So he did what any small bear/moose/kindergartener would do.
He yelped, and he kept yelping, and he sprinted, hauling the dish monster with him.
He was terror personified.
Dishes were flying.
Flatware became aimless projectiles.
Lulu tried to scramble away, but howling and bolting only increased the cacophony and therefore his fear. His barks became desperate. He sounded like a dying bull seal.
He and the basket demon clinging to his neck came tearing around the kitchen table toward where I was standing, and BECAUSE I AM A GD HERO WITH YEARS OF MOMMY EXPERIENCE, I sprang into action.
I was a ninja, friend. A cool-under-pressure, graceful ass ninja as I instantly understood my three-fold goal — stop the dog, calm him down, slay the basket monster — and, heedless of the danger, threw myself in their path.
I hit a steel chair on the way down, bruising my left flank, but every hero knows sacrifices must be made when we’re saving the world.
I flung my arms around Lulu’s neck as I skidded under his body like I was sliding into home plate. A sharp pain pierced my foot, but it was irrelevant in the scheme of things. I hugged Lu to my chest, holding him immobile and crooning, “I got you. I got you. It’s ok. You’re ok. I got you.”
He licked my face as he began to calm down, relief apparent in each slobbery pass. Old chili from someone’s days-old dinner stained his mouth, which he gladly wiped on mine. Such are the rewards of valor in the midst of peril.
“Shhhhhh,” I whispered. To Lulu and also to me.
Greg and Abby laughed as they picked up scattered dishes.
I didn’t let Lulu go. We just stayed on the floor comforting each other.
His heart was still racing, and so was mine, and, frankly, it was thoughtless and inconsiderate of my family to indulge their mirth when they should have begun planning my Courage in the Face of Grave Danger parade. Or raced to my side with a neck brace and smelling salts. Or at the very least grabbed a paper towel so I could wipe chili off my face.
It’s fine, though. No, no; keep laughing, Greg. It’s FINE.
I eventually hauled myself to my feet, one of which was gushing blood. (Full disclosure: it was either gushing blood or just missing the topmost layer of skin and not bleeding at all. One of those things is true, and I know which one I’m standing by.)
Except I didn’t make it all the way to standing before I slipped in Lulu’s poop and fell back down. Because yes, of course the sweet moose shat himself in the commotion. And of course I fell in a big old pile of poop while trying valiantly to fix the cascade of things gone wrong.
And if that, friends, isn’t a metaphor for 2020, I don’t know what is.
It’s a crisis. It’s sudden. It’s barreling toward us. The noise and chaos are overwhelming. We do everything in our power to mitigate the danger and manage the catastrophe. The universe laughs at our efforts. And we end up sitting in a pile of crap.
That’s your uplifting story of hope for the day.
But OMG LOOK AT THIS FACE.