I’ve seen about 8 million posts about “finding your tribe,” so I swore I wouldn’t delve into that topic.
And then, my dog vomited poop into my baseboard.
Yeah you heard me. Vomited. Poop. Into my non-removable, painted-to-the-wall, 70+ years-old cast iron baseboard heater.
Apparently scrambled eggs do not agree with my newest rescue, Elmo the Meatball.
And apparently the way he informs me of any dietary dislike is by having an intestinal meltdown, trying to hide the evidence by, well, consuming it, and then spraying it all over the corner of my son’s bedroom. INTO the baseboard.
I can’t stress that part enough. The baseboard. The non-removable baseboard.
Anyway…about 45 minutes into carefully removing everything I could see with my phone’s flashlight, a stack of qtips, paper towels, and 1/2 of our bath towels, I was done.
Done with this futile effort (if you have cast-iron baseboards you know the absolute hell I’m going through); done with these catastrophes ALWAYS happening when my husband is called in for an overnight (Vince and I found the disaster area 10 minutes after he left for work); and basically just done with always having to be “on.”
Kids are having a tantrum? Activate soothing mom voice.
Husband needs a boost? Activate cheerleader-mode.
Finances a bit tight? Activate dollar-stetcher superpower.
Dog pukes poo into the heater? Activate- nope. Magical “fix-it-all” toolbelt empty.
I was thinking about just how done I was as I tucked my son into his temporary bed on the couch, as we await the death-like odor to vacate his room and his sheets to boil in the washing machine.
I was thinking about just how done I am as I stood under the boiling water of my “why is this my life” shower, tea tree soap in one hand and a glass of red wine staring at me reassuringly from the window ledge.
I was thinking about how done I was with having to deal with these things on my own; having to be strong on my own; having to deal with scheduling and financial and LITERAL shit without anyone to pat me on the head and say “Don’t worry, I’ll take care of it.”
I would have to scrub my forehead for a week to remove the memory of it pressed against the ground, searching for anything that could be cleansed with Method All-Purpose Cleaner-soaked cotton swabs. I would have to hire someone to remove and replace the baseboard. I would have to find a new room for my son.
I would have to sell the house.
But just as I was stepping out of the shower and about to descend into a fit of sobs…my phone beeped.
It was Michele, my cousin and, for all intents and purposes, the supreme leader of my tribe.
Do we see each other often? No. Are we successful at making plans? HELL no.
But does she have a weird sixth sense about sending me a chocolate marshmallow pie recipe when I’m about to completely lose my sanity?
I sat there looking at the pie recipe and had to laugh. I immediately unleashed my entire ordeal to her. I sent her a picture of the poo vomit crime scene. She told me I needed wine. I sent her a picture of me wearing nothing but a bath towel, sipping wine and afraid to leave the bathroom.
She didn’t miss a beat.
She told me stories of her own disasters. We talked about our kids, our husbands, and our stressful but oh-so-worth it lives.
We talked about our wrinkles and our sex lives and what wine gives us a migraine.
We set up a playdate.
By the time our conversation was settling down I didn’t even remember that my entire house smells like dog poo puke. (I’m actually working with Yankee Candle on a wax melt. Stay tuned!)
So I guess I’ll delve.
Find your tribe. Love them. Value them. Thank God or the universe for them. Because they are the only ones who will understand when you send them a picture of yourself naked, sipping wine and hiding in a bathroom.
They are the only ones who will talk to you until almost midnight on a Sunday because they know you’re about to lose your mind.
They’re the only ones who will say things like, “Did you get the poop smell out of your nose yet?”
They are your “nothing-is-out-of-bounds” people. And you need them. And they need you.
So find your tribe. And let them know how much you love them.
To my tribe- I’d be nowhere without you.