It shouldn’t surprise anyone who’s been reading Mina’s blog since April that our carpet is a crime scene. Cancer and chemotherapy teamed up to make my sweet Mina Bean vomit, have diarrhea, and be incontinent all over the carpet in our apartment.

None of it was Mina’s fault in the least, but she always looked so unhappy after throwing up or letting fly the liquid poo. It wasn’t enough that the chemotherapy made her feel terrible, but it also made her violate her code of behavior. Mina’s not a fancy girl, but she seems to appreciate a clean carpet to lay on and a home that’s not an obstacle course.

I cleaned up after her diligently, always reassuring her as I cleaned that everything was OK, that she was a very good girl and not to worry. “We’re a team, sweetie – you make a mess and I clean!”

Still, there’s only so much that vinegar and baking soda can handle and today it’s time to clean the carpet. A friend is coming on Saturday to stay the weekend and I need to remove forensic evidence from the carpet.

You’re wondering why this is such a big deal, right? I’m wondering that myself. I think it’s because it feels like I’m cleaning up vestiges of living, breathing Mina baby. Am I sweeping away her scent and her hairs and DNA? Am I making too many changes and bringing in too many new things since Mina died? (There’s a new tablecloth, computer, purse, and scanner to date.) We talked about this a little last night in the aplb.org chatroom. Someone felt it was wrong to make any changes because it would alter the landscape of her life with her beloved companion. I feel that way, too. Let’s face it – canines like routine, they like things to be in the same place and this is true especially as they get older. That’s why I’m so glad we enjoy living here because Mina was nine years old when we moved here and she was clearly unhappy about another change.

But, as Mina’s Auntie Sue told me, it’s not nice to put your guests on an Aero bed on the carpet if the carpet bears reminders of Mina’s illness. So that’s what I’m going with today: I’m not sweeping away bits of my baby girl, but sweeping away vestiges of the hateful cancer that she fought so hard against and lost.

It still makes me sad and I’m not going to fight it.

I love you sweetie, I love you, I love you, I love you

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