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I’ve spent the majority of my life living with a pet. The first pet I owned was a fish my granddaddy bought me as a teenager. It didn’t live long, Probably because I had no idea about fish, and no one clued me in on water having chlorine in it, so it died right after I cleaned the tank the first time. I remember his lifeless body floating upside down and squealing when my mom made me scoop his fermenting body out of the tank.

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I’d stopped at the twenty-four-hour Kroger by my house. I’d had a full night with the girls celebrating a birthday. I’d gotten my tongue pierced with the birthday girl. We drank frozen margaritas thinking that it would help the swelling. It didn’t. By the time I sobered up enough to drive, my tongue was throbbing, swelling, and talking was out of the question. I could feel regret bubbling up in my chest. I wanted to pick up some Listerine so I’d be prepared for whatever this new piercing brought my way in the morning. Or in a few hours because it was already after two am. 

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