Friday, May 15, 2009

The things moms do

Last night when the boys were feeding their fish at bedtime we noticed that Goldy was listlessly sitting on the bottom of the tank. She wasn't dead. She'd move if you put your hand on the side of the tank where she was "resting", but from her floppy, sinky behavior I thought she might be on her way out.

Big Dog noticed her odd behavior, and asked what was wrong. Though I honestly had no idea, I told him it was probably related to my decision to turn off the tank heater. (Before you get all "goldfish don't need a tank heater, they're cold water fish" you need to understand my house is uninsulated and the lower level frequent ices over to the point we have to chip our way into the bedrooms with an icepick. Ok that might be a slight exaggeration, but only slight.) I'd made the decision to turn it off after a few warmish days in Seattle combined with the tank heater pushed the tank temperature to near 80 degrees which is too hot for goldfish. They're cold water fish after all. Why didn't I just adjust the temperature? I'll be honest with you, I tried but it seems the tank heater is smarter and more wily than I am, and I couldn't figure it out so I resorted to the brute force method of control and unplugged it. Anyhow, the water temperature when Goldy was acting...um, fishy (in a bad way) was about 55 degrees. Lower than recommended, but not fatal.

And after all that information you really wanted has derailed this narrative, I'll get back on track. So while I told Big Dog she was just cold, I was also worried that she was reacting badly to the tank cleaning I just did a few days ago. I checked the water with the dipstick test and it was all in the "safe" range. Phew. But still, there she was, resting in the tank gravel or swimming awkwardly about when roused. I tried to display an outward cool, but inside I was a bit panicky.

One thing I have learned by getting the boys fish is that I could never be a spy. My stealth replacements of past Goldies and Spotties nearly gave me a heart attack. I am not sly or especially graceful in my covert activities. So as I sat there watching this unhappy fish, I just silently asked the powers that govern household pets to not let Goldy die while Big Dog was sleeping. If she had to pass, let her do it while he was out of the house. That way I could zip off to the pet store and replace her before he got home from school. (Go ahead and judge me. I'm not being deceptive to protect Big Dog's gentle soul, I'm doing it because I am in no way mentally ready to discuss the fate of his beloved fish right this very moment.)

After the boys fell asleep, I went back upstairs to do research. Ok, really I went back upstairs to see how the season finale of Lost ended, but I also did some research online while watching the Jack and Sawyer show and then long after. I found one diagnosis site that suggested swim bladder disease, treatment, fast your fish but give them chopped frozen peas. (weird) Another suggested general distress borough on by eating chunks of crap stirred up from the gravel cleaning in the tank. No real treatment, just a general "don't stir up crap while you clean the gravel in your tank" warning. Still another site suggested adding salt to the tank if your fish look stressed, but make sure it isn't iodized and has no other additives. They gave a dose for goldfish and though it made me worry slightly, I decided I'd go ahead and do it. I mean, she looked like she was at death's door anyhow.

By this time it's almost 1 am, so I head off to bed. On the way I double check my kosher salt to verify it meets the salt requirements. I measure the dose into a small cup and leave it on the stove to be added to the tank in the morning. All of this time, I'm trying to come up with the right words to explain Goldy's death, should she be floating when Big Dog woke up.

This morning I woke up and went to check on my patient. The little fucker was swimming about the tank, happy as ever. She was just messing with me. Goldy, you're an asshole.

20 comments:

Maureen said...

Ahahaha! So glad that Goldy is okay; it is a helpless feeling when fish get sick, isn't it? I know it all too well... great post!

Blog Hopping!!!

Tara R. said...

You're a regular Dr. Doolittle. Nicely done!

BlogHoppers!

Melisa with one S said...

Nice to "meet" you! I love how you looked for sites like FishWebMD. :)

Bloghopping! :)

Diana said...

Don't lull yourself into a false sense of security. I had one do that one time. Was all at death's door and then fine the next day and I thought everything was peachy... two days later it was floating.

I sure hope that doesn't happen to Goldy, but... yeah, did to me.

Mommy Melee said...

Fish are definitely asshats.

BLOGHOPPER!

Agent Provocateur said...

Really nice to meet you! I agree, fish are assholes.

Best,
Secret Agent Mama

Karen MEG said...

Glad GOldy is okay, we've got her twin over here...

the things that the kids make use think and go all angsty about....

so have another drink *clink*


bloghoppin!

WeaselMomma said...

LOL, that was good. Happy BlogHopping.

Miss Grace said...

Gabriel's fish lasted about two weeks before it mysteriously disappeared from its bowl. Current theory is that it leapt down the garbage disposal?

Happy bloghopping!

KaiserCracker said...

fish trickery! *cheers*

badassdad05 said...

I thought the POINT of getting goldfish was to teach kids about death? I think you might be doing it wrong.

:)

off for more bloghopping!

Allison said...

You know, I'm surprised our goldfish (also Goldie---notice, though, with ie not y) didn't die sooner than he did. I mean, really, that tank looked awful towards the end. Are we evil, untrustworthy pet owners? Well, no, because he must have last 3 and was as big as my palm at the end! The sucker fish got real big and died by getting stuck in the rock formation we had at the bottom.

Arriving (and now leaving) on the Blog Hoppin' train!

Hookin' Angel

Ms. Maxwell said...

Me? I'm thinkin' Goldy has seen Finding Nemo too many times. She wants out and is playing the dead card on you.

At least that's what my Blog Hopping Blur tells me tonight.

Heather said...

I don't judge. If i had kids, I replace their pets faster than they could say "My pet ie sick"

Seriously.

Glad that Goldy is feeling better!

Happy Bloghoppin' :)

PG said...

solid post, the final line nearly had beer coming out my nose!

Smartasstic Mom said...

She was totally fucking with you.

That fish has moxy.

Blog Hoppin!

Erin said...

Doesn't Goldy know who she's messing with? Goldfish are not snowflakes.

BusyDad said...

Goldfish are just attention whores. Goldy wanted a blog post that she could boast to her friends about!

hoppin...

buzzeedad

Beth said...

Gotta love Goldy's spirit! She may be the world's smartest goldfish.

Kaza said...

Little fucker. (But srsly, glad to hear he's okay so you don't have to attempt further Missions Impossible to replace him.)

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...