We have been asked if we ever think about having children. I won’t lie: we have contemplated the possibility. For now, the dogs provide plenty of instructive opportunities for what parenthood would look like for us.
Late last night or early this morning, one of the dogs began making a retching noise, which eventually turned into the production of regurgitated stomach contents. I have only a vague recollection of the events, as I believe nighttime is a time for rest and repose, not holding back puppy ears and cleaning up the resulting by-product of a grass-eating binger.
I also believe any type of regurgitation is best done away – away from me, away from places where people eat, sleep or nap, away from the indoors, if possible. This means when I am in a state of wakefulness and one of the dogs makes a retching sound, I summarily usher him or her to the outdoors. This generally involves a lot of pushing, running around, arm waving, and I may have been known to shout a bit to expedite the process of moving the gagging dog from the inside of the house to the outside; mostly, I can report this process usually does not work. By the time we make it to the door, stomach contents have been cleared, and all the dogs do is go outside and munch down a thicket of grass, thereby ensuring a repeat of the process at some future point.
I don’t know that I would use this process with a child, but I suspect I might. I remember the first time my nephew got sick as a toddler. When I tried to explain the generally accepted practice of vomiting into the toilet, he looked at me as if I had asked him to bob for apples in the thing. He clearly had no concept of the controlled aspects of the process, and steadfastly refused to project his stomach contents, thereby resulting in a dribbling effect that compounded the difficulty of cleaning.
K, on the other hand, plods patiently behind the dogs, armed with a roll of paper towels, a plastic disposal bag and cleaning solution, mopping up their mess while cooing, “poor baby,” regardless of the time of day or night. I swear she didn’t curse or gag the entire time she cleaned up after Trinity last night. And when I woke up this morning, I found the most unfathomable thing of all: not only had K not sent the heretofore barfing Trinity away, she had allowed her entrée into the bed.