While we were in “get our butts in gear, our house has gotta be clean for four house guests” mode, I woke up hurting so much that I couldn’t touch my knees. Logically, the right thing to do was to literally sit in the shower for 45 minutes pushing myself to stretch the whole time. I noticed the drain was slow but didn’t think much about it until I came home and noticed our other bathtub was full of water. “Bizarre,” I thought.
I flushed the toilet later and heard the other toilet in our house gurgling. Not good, not good, not good.
“Devin, what does it mean when the shower floods the other shower and the toilet floods the other toilet?” I texted.
Shortly after he came home, we learned that it means our garage is full of diluted pee. Yes, pee sprayed all over our garage. Awesome.
We promptly called a plumber who told us to find our water line’s release valve and flush it ourselves until he came on Monday. We found ourselves searching our lawn with our phone flashlights and whatever other light devices we had with working batteries. We looked at each other with wide eyes realizing the only release valve we had was in our basement which meant… hand buckets.
This also meant something else. We were planning on having Devin’s birthday party the next day. In a world of pinterest parties, I felt awesome being like “we’re cancelling my husband’s birthday party because plumbing.” As we hauled out buckets of pee, careful not to slosh it on ourselves, I told Devin we should still have it, order pizza with anchovies, and make it ninja turtle themed in lieu of feeling like we were literally playing in the sewer of our home. I joked that I was going to dump all of it in our neighbor’s yard because their dogs bark all night, but I restrained myself even though I think Devin still thinks I did it? Maybe, I actually did it.
I began playing Frank Sinatra on one of our phones which turned out to be a poor choice for the sarcastic mood I was in. Let your heart be light translated in my head to “like our bladders.” From now on, our troubles will be out of sight became “until the plumber bills us for hauling pee out of our basement.” Make the Yuletile gay became “yes, this is a tide of pee…coming from our basement.” From now on, our troubles will be miles away became “no they won’t, our septic tank is still in our front yard.” Here we are as in olden days became “yes, because we have no more indoor plumbing.” Happy golden days of yore made my brain wonder how much of the song I could honestly apply to pee. I began laughing hysterically.
Ever faithful Devin reassured me and the house: “Autumn, I’m sure it isn’t all pee. I mean, you took a 45 minute shower. I’m sure a lot of it is just bath water.”
We began planning our weekend around restroom breaks outside of our home, showers at the gym, and meals elsewhere. We texted our family to come a little later than anticipated because our backyard doesn’t suit the au natural bathroom experience. Friends graciously invited us over to mooch off of their food, company, and thankfully bathrooms.
We began cleaning the house behind schedule because of the pee disaster and found it was infested… with moths. Favorite sweaters were being pulled out of the closet completely desecrated. Our normal cleaning routine delayed until we could find every chewed up piece of clothing we had and made a pile by the stairs. We went to church and I began laughing hysterically when a speaker in church mentioned how grateful she was for indoor plumbing. I knew soon that this modern amenity would be in our house within 24 hours again and I became grateful I didn’t run my dishwasher and other things I thought about doing.
…. in which I find it was not over.
After the plumber came, I opened our washing machine to throw in our clothing items that were pee covered and not taken over by the moth buffet in our closet and it hit me in the nose. I closed it again. I opened it again and the putrid smell of pee that had been sitting for three days hit me in the face. We washed our washer out four times with straight up bleach running cycles before the smell, the sludge, and the nightmare came out and we were able to begin washing our clothes again.
While our house was not as clean as it normally is when guests come, for obvious reasons mentioned above, it was a wonderful Thanksgiving.