swimming free

So, this post is going to be quite the bummer.

Last Sunday, my mother helped me clean out my fish aquarium. I noticed that my filter was not working, like, at all, so I needed to go buy a new one. I got that and I also got the bottle of stuff you’re supposed to put in the tank if you’re starting out with a brand new aquarium and you want to add the fish the same day.

We cleaned it out really well, not with any cleansers, but just hot water and paper towels. I cleaned all their little houses and trees and statues, put the new water in, put in fresh gravel, made sure the temperature was right, and then put the fish back inside. We then left the house because Mom and Mike were driving back home, and I had to go back to the pet store because I had bought the wrong size replacement filter.

When I got back, both of my beautiful fish, AnaÏs and Henry, were dead, floating on top of the water like wilted lotus flowers. I screamed and sobbed and kept yelling, “Why? Why? Why?” (Kind of like Nancy Kerrigan did, but this is no time for jokes, dammit). I was truly devastated. I called Deb and was sobbing so hard I could barely get the words out, so she just rushed over. I took some photos of them and cried all over them and kissed them and made them a little casket.

We went back to the pet store and told them what happened and they said the problem was that I had removed all the bacteria and the cleanliness was too much of a shock on their system. I just kept crying and crying, feeling like the horrific fish murderer I am.

They told me to let the filter run for a week and then the tank would be ready for fish again. June (my sucker fish) survived because they are apparently the cockroaches of the fish world and would survive a nuclear attack.

Anaïs and Henry brought me so much joy, calmness, and beauty. I am so sorry that my ignorance caused their demise. I hope they forgive me. I love you, beauties.Anaïs (top) and Henry | April 15, 2018