And Then it Wasn’t

My pet fly is just over 4 weeks old now. What started off as a fun joke, has turned into an unhealthy obsession. Last night I thought I accidentally killed the little guy. I had set a bunch of heavy bags down on the counter, and when I was done putting everything away I noticed a tiny, flattened body with wings. I gasped and must have let out some sort of strangled cry, because the kids came running to see what all the blubbering was about. I sank to my knees and lowered my head as I explained what I had done. The children’s eyes grew wide with horror; their shock was palpable. Looking back, I think it was my reaction, rather than the dead fly, that had them shaking their heads at me.

Eventually I gathered myself up off the floor in order to clean up and dispose of the body. I brought my face in close to whisper my apologies when all of a sudden I realized that this wasn’t my fly at all! It was some sort of flying insect, but not my sweet, charming housefly! Then I heard it: the soft, subtle buzz of my old, infirm friend. He made slow, lazy loops around my head before landing on my shoulder. We examined the body on the counter together, each of us wrapped in our own blanket of relief.

I’m not sure if my attachment to this fly is simple compassion, or a sign that it’s time for me to take up a new hobby outside of the house. (Dennis’ impassive stare when I pranced into the living room to share my glorious news tells me it’s probably the latter).

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