Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Day 100: Celebration and Fish

We finally reached Day 100!! I feel like I should have made cupcakes to celebrate such a momentous occasion. Thanks for reading along and offering thoughts for the journey. You’ve helped make it easier.

Now, on to a matter that has been bugging me for a while and I have yet to address it. This will complete the process of bringing all living creatures within the realm of change. At least, here at our house.

We have a fish tank. Correction. I have a fish tank. I fell in love with it at Petsmart (on sale, of course!) and without any knowledge of fish or the care required, I told Dom that I had to have that tank. The kids were still pre-K-ish in age, and Nemo was all the rage. I envisioned a colorful tank full of vivid characters and hours of relaxing entertainment.

More like a pain-in-the-butt tank with egotistical characters and hours of internet research, not to mention wads – I mean WADS – of money.

I’ll drill this down to the short version of all this experience has taught me. Snails need no partner to reproduce with a vengeance. Clown loaches eat snails, but freak-out sensitive little boys in the process. Plecos can grow to over 10 inches in length and scare the heck out of all their tank mates when they swim fast. Plecos are also nocturnal, so you don’t see the torture going on during the day. There is only one brand of algae killer that works fast, but it has an alternate effect on fish (our Molly swam bent in half for three months after I used the product). Cory catfish can survive just about anything. It is possible to suddenly have 19 baby fish born overnight in your tank. Fish mothers sometimes eat their young. A female fish can hold sperm for up to 6 months before releasing it to impregnate herself. That’s how you come home from the pet store with one female fish and four months later you have babies swimming around. And finally, if you cover yourself in OFF earlier in the day and then have to stick your entire arm into the tank later in the evening, you can effectively kill over half of your fish population. It will take you two days to realize what caused the epidemic.

Now, you’re probably wondering what any of this has to do with positive, healthy change. Well, the fish need some positive, healthy changes too…mostly to their water. See, in the last few years I have not been so regular about cleaning their tank. So much so that when I do clean the tank, we lose many fish to their inability to process clean water through their poor polluted gills.

I have a schedule of tank maintenance all set up in my email system so that I get reminders of when to do this or that. Problem is that I ignore them. And the fish. So, the fish tank is going on the chore chart now as a permanent reminder that FISH DESERVE LOVE TOO. I imagine if my fish had cars, their bumper stickers would say as much.

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