Wednesday, December 30, 2009
Why is it that when someone has to throw up it always seems to happen in the middle of the night? Getting sick is never fun but it’s especially annoying when it happens on a holiday. That’s exactly how Christmas Day started at our house this year.
It was Christmas morning, 12:16am. The reason I know the exact time is because I looked at the clock right after my oldest woke me up saying, “Mom, my stomach hurts.” Before I could reply, “Go to the bathroom!” The evidence of his illness spewed all over me and the bed. You may wonder how I knew he needed to go to the bathroom since he didn’t tell me he had to throw up. I can only say, a mother knows. A mother knows when her child -makes his way down a flight of stairs, past the gifts Santa left without giving them a notice- is getting ready to do the Technicolor Yawn.
As soon as he was able to go back to sleep I noticed something different. An uncomfortable rumble had started. It was if my stomach was trying to tell me something. In an eerie, horror film kind of way my stomach was saying, “You’re next.” There is no way I could let this get me down. I had more than 30 people scheduled to arrive at my house. It was my family; the people who rarely get sick. Even when they’re sick, they don’t admit it. Feeling sick and marching on is a sign of fortitude in my family. They don’t use sick days unless they can use them to do something fun. I know, they’re nuts!
Christmas morning, after my children finished opening their gifts my oldest seemed to be feeling better. Before I could throw the back of my hand to forehead giving the symbolic sign for, “whew, that was close,” a familiar feeling started making its presence known. There was no time! I still had a ton to do. So I did what any warm blooded mother does in a crisis… I pretended I didn’t notice and went on about my day; baking, cleaning and wrapping a few gifts.
A few hours later, the crowd started arriving. This was about the time my head felt like it was going to explode and the growls from my stomach had changed its message from, “You’re next” to “They’re here and you’re screwed!”
There was a flurry of activity. The children were excited with all the Christmas loot and the adults were stuffed with rich food (none of which I could eat because of the caustic warnings I was receiving from my abdominal region). Finally it was time for everyone to leave and for me to embrace whatever this stomach bug had in store for me. When the last guest left I rushed to the bedroom, put on my new flannel pajamas and cuddled under the covers.
The following day was a blur. This virus kicked my butt! In between going back and forth to the bathroom, trying to hold down ginger ale and having some very bazaar dreams, I remember thinking, “I’m dying!” And also thinking if this was the end, I really wish I would have finished the laundry that’s piled up in my bathroom.
24 hours later I got out of bed and stood upright. While my movements were very deliberate and weak, I was able to shower and instruct my husband on where to put all the Christmas decorations. He even had the nerve to say he likes me better when I’m sick! Anywho, things are back to normal. Everything has been sanitized and is ready for the next stomach bug which I expect will make its way to our home right after school starts back in January.
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