You may recall, about two weeks ago, Adam won a trip to the ER, courtesy of his busted head. In addition to stitches, he apparently came home with germs. ER on Saturday, then happy and healthy all day Saturday and Sunday … until around dinner time. Just as I was trying to coax some peas and corn into his mouth. He gave me a funny look, made an odd gurgle, and proceeded to vomit. So much for dinner (his and mine). He puked twice more that night and then, seemed better after a day.
We continued on our merry way until Thursday, when Sam started complaining that his stomach hurt. This did not phase as me as Sam often complains that his stomach hurts. It “hurts” when he wakes up in the morning and he’s hungry. It “hurts” when we “make” him eat too much dinner and it “hurts” when it wants dessert. I should have connected the dots sooner, but the kind of hurt he was feeling became evident when he puked all over himself and me during afternoon nap. After a shower and much rest, he seemed better the next day. That would be Friday, when Wendy puked during the night. I cleaned her up, without any help from Mike. Although he wasn’t puking, he was down and out with other flu-like symptoms. It was a tough week to be the mom.
We survived the weekend and by Sunday, everyone seemed to be back to normal. Throughout this whole time, I had been vigilant about washing my hands and not eating or drinking any of the kids food. On Sunday, I may have absentmindedly munched on a few goldfish left out in a bowl from snack time. Monday night, I was enjoying a nice night of fellowship at my church’s MOPS group when my stomach started rumbling. I thought maybe my belt was too tight after enjoying a hearty dinner. I quickly decided otherwise and raced home.
I walked in the door, barely gave Mike a nod as I grabbed our “barf bowl” and headed up to our room. In light of the week’s past events, I prepared myself by laying an old towel on my bed, placing the bucket in a handy location, and pulled my hair back in a bandanna. My stomach was churning and knew what was to come. I lay in bed writhing, willing my stomach to calm down, but I knew it wouldn’t. I knew that puking would make it feel better, but I dreaded having all that dinner come back up. After an hour in bed, I decided I could take no more. I made for the porcelain throne and bid adieu to my meal.
I felt much better after that, but still had a restless night of sleep. Mike took care of the kids in the morning so I could lay in bed. I slept away the morning, roused myself to make the noontime preschool pick-up, then headed back home. The kids ate Mickey Ds in the car and then we went in and I put everyone to bed, including moi.
Mike came home early to meet Wendy at the bus stop and handle the dinnertime hour. By evening, I was feeling better and by Wednesday, I felt human again.
I hate being sick, and am thankful I don’t get sick often. But I will say, it is a good compassion builder. I tend be short on empathy when my kids complain about not feeling well. I’m more of a “Life is tough, suck it up!” kind of mom. But after going through what they went through, I definitely will be treating them with an extra measure of kindness the next time the flu bug comes our way (hopefully not for a while!).
In the meantime, I hope we can stick with the gentler kinder version of bucket filling.