Skunk Juice, Butt Worms, and a Broody Hen

Here it is, all of it.

Raw and unapologetic.

What would life be like if that were the norm instead of the exception? What if the information we shared about our relationships with each other and our animals went unedited.

This is our life and our relationship together, the good, the bad, the indifferent, the ups and downs, the hair in the coffee mornings, and the piercing barks in the middle of the night, the longer than necessary phone conversations, and the promises of walks that were empty at best.

From an understanding place, unedited.

Life, the real version.

I believe more often than not we see the edited versions of those around us, especially when we start to talk about our animals. And editing is amazing.

Edit, chop, edit, chop – and as anyone who is in the video or film business can tell you, lots of magic can happen in the editing room to create illusions, or shift context, or simply just to take out the messy, confusing, and harder to understand stuff. You know, like life.

It is easy to see the editing that others do, and easy to judge as well, but it is hard to acknowledge our own editing. And editing is a way of absolving yourself from being part of memory that you may not be proud of, or don’t want to own, or in denial of, or too much to comprehend so the easy edited version is better.

Have you ever had a friend tell you how awesome their dog is and that they never have had a problem, ‘like you do’, with their perfect dog, and yet two nights ago that same dog was lose in the neighborhood, took something off your front deck after pooping in your yard, did a bit of fence fighting with the Frenchie down the street because that’s always fun, and then chased Mr. Smiths car for three blocks. This type of editing happens everyday, where love is based on an illusion of perfect, and it isn’t real, none of it.

I have a cute little Office Assistant on Fridays, she helps me fill the dog pools, pick flowers, hang signs, and just in general, be her cute little four year old self. She is so sweet to all of the dogs in class and will ask if she can give one a treat, and she knows when one doesn’t want to visit with her.

She has been raised around animals, in a nurturing and respectful way, not in a treat them like toys way. Her animals are part of her family, there is no question there, they just look a bit different, feel a bit feathery or furry, and talk in a different language.

When she tells me about her daily going-ons with her menagerie, during our office meetings of course, she lays it all out as raw and unapologetic as anyone could. Her observations never have anything to do with loving her animals more or less, or trying to make them some illusion of perfect, the love is a given, a constant, this is just the real life she is living with them, unedited.

Miss Nancy did you know that when my Mom was hugging our dog on the couch he actually had butt worms coming out, so we had to call a friend to help us out with that.

Miss Nancy our dog got skunk juice all over him this weekend and we had to give him a bath because he didn’t smell very good, and then I threw up all over myself in the car because I think I had a stomach ache.

Miss Nancy we have a broody hen right now, her name is Patty, and if you reach in to get her she will peck you all over, so we have to be careful. She just doesn’t want to leave her eggs at all. And our other hen is going to be broody soon because our new rooster was on top of her this morning.

An understanding, free from judgement, a loving and get real place. This is just how it is. The whole messy, wonderful, complicated, loving, sometimes stinky, and sometimes difficult part about relationships is sometimes best described, as is. And when the feeling of editing starts, just let ‘skunk juice, butt worms, and a broody hen’ roll around in your head for a moment, I promise it will keep you honest.

To the real relationships, Nancy




4 Comments Add yours

  1. Teri says:

    Cheers to the purity of a child

  2. Janet McCulloch says:

    It’s a joy to be in class with the greatest office assistant you could ask for. She’s a doll and truly loves her job!

  3. CJ says:

    This made my evening. Thank you!

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