I was awakened by my little 5 year old at 6:30 am by a persistent “Mom. Mom. Mommy.” When the darling hubs (who KNOWS I am USELESS in the morning) tried to help her, she just kept “mom”-ing and we knew something was up.
I managed to mummer a semi-intelligible “Whud up?” She quietly and pitifully whispered “I frew up”. At this point I WHIPPED up in bed and threw my glasses on, while trying to imagine how much and what I was going to clean up. When I looked, she already had “the bucket” (we only have one bathroom in our house, and it’s all the way downstairs on the other side of the house, so I always keep a “barf bucket” upstairs) with her. This prompted me to cautiously hope as I asked, “where did you throw up baby?” I was already on my way out of bed and over to her to deal with the inevitable evil when she shocked me with “in the bucket.” I couldn’t believe it!! While I asked in disbelief, “You threw up in the BUCKET?” and just as I reached her…yep, she made the bucket. She woke up feeling sick…while it was still dark…stumbled to get the bucket…threw up…and THEN woke me up.
There are few times I have been more proud of that baby girl! At even the “tender” young age of 5, she is showcasing one of the biggest differences between women and men. When women are sick, we “take care” of what and whomever we need to. When men get sick they…wait for it, you know its coming… LAY DOWN AND DIE!! From little boys to big men.
This incident contrasted so much to another, that happened just over 2 years ago with my son, who was 6 at the time. He must have crawled into our bed at some point in the night, right between the dear hubs and I. At around 1:30 AM he woke up (in my bed) and yelped “mommy?” Just as I turned to my left to see that he was in my bed and ask “what?” and “why are you in my bed?”, IT happened. He threw up ALL over me…himself…the bed…but mainly ME. I was COVERED from my head & hair down to my stomach. Did I MENTION the last thing he had was a large glass of MILK? So the “dear” hubs wakes up and starts gagging, but WHO was the one covered in small person vomit? Oh yah… ME!
SO I get the child up, strip his clothes, clean him off & put him to back to bed with his garbage can RIGHT next to the bed. Then I strip the bed (and myself) and give the hubs clean sheets to put on so he can at least get some sleep. Then I head downstairs and throw everything straight in the washer with 2 cups of soap and HOT water. Next I throw MYSELF in a BOILING hot shower for 30 minutes and got into some clean clothes. At this point it’s after 2 am and I am finally headed upstairs (Zombie-style) to try and sleep in case it happens again. I crawl in bed and am just about to drift off, when I hear Jonah say “mom?!” then I hear the UNMISTAKABLE sound of him being sick again. I’m up out of bed like a firecracker when I see him: STANDING IN THE DOORWAY with NO BUCKET puking all over himself AND the floor. WHY!? I had equipped him with a receptacle placed PRECISELY so all he had to do was turn to the right, hang his head off the bed and barf. HE DIDN’T EVEN HAVE TO MOVE. But NOOOOO! So this time I took the small garbage can, put it in front of the child. Luckily I still had some Lysol upstairs so I attacked his carpet with cleaner, then covered it VERY generously in old newspapers (there is the Daily Post word of the day).
Sidenote: The word of the day from the Daily Post is Newspaper, and for those of you who were not aware, newspaper is an EXCELLENT medium to absorb unpleasant odors. If you clean a porous media (such as carpet) and you put newspaper down on top of the wet spot (as long as your carpet isn’t white) it will help absorb any leftover odors, while keep you from stepping on saturated carpet.
Now that the carpet was attended to, I guided the boy downstairs while ensuring that the small garbage can was securely under his chin. As soon as we hit the bathroom, I proceeded to (gently) throw the boy into the tub/shower, strip him of his defiled clothes, and hose him off. Then I took a deep, DEEP breath and, as calmly as I possibly could given the circumstances, EXPLAINED in GREAT detail, the following:
“Jonah…this is a BUCKET. Do you know why I gave it to you?”
“Dat’s da garbage. You gave it to me cuz I was sick.”
Took a deep breath &…trying not to kill the child for snark regarding the title of said receptacle… I continued on:
“When you are sick, ANYTHING that can catch throw up becomes a ‘bucket’. You can use a garbage can, a cup, or ANYTHING nearby that will save your sheets, bed and carpet from getting yucky. So WHY didn’t you throw up in the garbage can?” I asked.
“Because I wanted you to hold it for me” he wailed.
THERE YOU HAVE IT Ladies and Germs!! Women, hold our own (barf) buckets…but boys (I GUESS I mean MEN) need us to to hold the (barf) bucket for them.
Although that was a rough hour, it was JUST the beginning chapter of the WORST household stomach flu experience EVER. I was going to chronicle the entire series in one blog, but as I am already nearly at 1,000 words… STAY TUNED for Part 2.