Supervised Mess

20170526_163534My pup Della ate a towel years ago and required surgery. Since then, she only gets a brief supervised towel time after each bath. backEach time, she acts as if she’s won the doggie lottery.

She’s a lab, and she loves water. Throughout the summer, she has a tub of water I change every week. She sits in it, lies in it, and splashes in it. She makes a mess.

I filled her tub with fresh water before her recent bath. She patiently let me scrub her, then stood still in anticipation as I dried her. She knew what that towel meant. It would soon be hers. As usual, I finished drying her and laid the towel across her back before releasing her. She darted away until the towel fell off. Then she grabbed it and swung it around like an excited soccer fan in the stands of an international game. She stopped and looked at me then dropped the muddy towel and jumped into her water tub . So much for drying her. Then she began to roll on the ground. So much for washing her.

But it was still worth it. She might have some surface dirt and water drips but she was cleaner than before. Her excitement simply didn’t keep her as clean as she could have been.

We get excited, too, including ways that get us messy. It doesn’t mean we undo all the good or all the growth. But we need to keep our celebrations in check. Maybe we need a bit more supervision. Or maybe our supervision knows how much frreedom we need and for how long.

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