Last night, I was awakened at 12:28 by the sound of our dog, Duke, trying to throw up. For those of you who have heard this sonorous fanfare before, you know it is not the most pleasant of alarm clocks. I let him out, and he immediately began to eat grass. I figured that his stomach was upset and I would let him go for a little while.
I went into the kitchen to get something to drink and glanced at Aidan's fish tank on the counter. My heart sank. Nemo died...again.
Two wretched weeks ago, Aidan won a goldfish at the Lycoming County Fair. I decided that we would do this right, and I got a start kit fish tank with a filter, etc. at the local pet store. Aidan named the fish that he won Nemo (of course!). Nemo thrived for exactly one week, and then he became "very tired" (according to Aidan) and wouldn't wake up. While Aidan was at preschool, I went back to the pet store, seeking for Nemo's long-lost twin. I found instead, a similarly colored fish (white with an orange cap on his head) who was much larger. "You can just tell your son that Nemo grew while he was at school," they told me.
They didn't know Aidan, that's for sure. He took one look at the replacement fish and said, "Mommy, Little Nemo gone. Big Nemo here now." Did he read that out of Death for Dummies: A Guide for the Rest of Us?
So, it was with great sadness that I saw that Big Nemo had also passed on to the Big Blue. Meanwhile, the dog eventually came in, with Michael's coaxing, and Aidan woke up, afraid to pee in his pajamas and calling for Daddy's assistance. Two hours later, Mike came back to our bedroom and said, "Now he wants you." Apparently, Aidan hadn't slept a wink since Mike went upstairs. We changed guard, and I went upstairs to be with Aidan who was extremely restless. At 5:30 a.m., I finally took him for a car ride to Dunkin' Donuts so that I could get some coffee and he could get some Munchkins.
We returned and Michael and Gabrielle were fast asleep, so I took Aidan for a 45-minute walk around the Borough of Montoursville. By the time we got back to the house, he had fallen asleep. I laid him on the bed with Mike, gave Big Nemo a proper burial, and finally got a chance to drink that coffee!