It was a little after 4:00 when my cell phone rang- that's rarely a good thing. I picked up my phone and saw the name of my kids' school on the display. Definitely not going to be good news. Zach had just thrown up. A lot. (I totally need to get his afternoon teacher a gift- she dealt with some major gross. Gift suggestions are welcome!)
Jeff couldn't go get him- he's on special install projects all week. So I gathered up my stuff- bringing my laptop home since I knew I'd most likely have to stay home the next day. Called Christy and told her we had to go right away and off we went.
I know I wasn't much fun on the drive home and am thankful to have a friend who understands. My mind was racing. Jeff is the one who deals with puke. He can handle clean up without a problem but I... gag. And sometimes puke. It's not good.
I get Christy home and I get to the school. He'd thrown up 3 times in an hour and was basically throwing up any time he moved. I got him some water and had him hang out in the bathroom for a few minutes while I managed the logistics. I kind of hoped he'd puke in the bathroom- to lessen the chances of an incident in the car.
He bravely held the double bagged plastic grocery bag in his lap, near his face. Every cough... I was on the verge of panic. I even drove with my flashers on in case I had to pull over quickly.
But we arrived home without incident.
Every time he coughs, he thinks he's going to puke. I stationed him in the bathroom and got the bedroom set up as base camp.
He puked at what I assume would have been an hour after the 3rd vomit at school.
He puked about half an hour later.
As of this writing, he's kept water down for 2 hours.
I'm hoping it's a good sign that he got the ickies out with that first hour.
And even when he's feeling cruddy, he still manages to have a little fun and be my Zappy.
In the car, he'd stick his face down in the plastic bag and then peek up at me in my rearview mirror, give a little half hearted cough, and grin at me- "Just a cough!" he'd say brightly.
At home, we have a red plastic bucket we keep bedside for puking kids. At one point, hanging over the edge of his bed, face in the bucket, coughing and waiting to see if he was going to barf, he started talking into the bucket. Then he started singing into the bucket. And the singing even led to a little booty shaking. No puke with that one- but I giggled a lot!
My hope is that the puke is done and that he will want to be restful at home on Thursday. I'm actually in the middle of a detail focused and data entry intensive project for work that I've been enjoying working on and I'd like to get some of it knocked out from home.
Part of me wishes that my kids would never get sick, of course. But I have to admit that I kind of like a sick day here and there. I have memories of being sick and my mom taking care of me. I remember the specific blankets that covered my feverish body when I had the flu. I remember my mom playing rummy with me. I remember the couch I slept on. I remember the food my mom would slowly let me start trying as I recovered from a nasty stomach bug. And I remember the first time I had a stomach flu and spent most of the night puking in the bathroom but was old enough to not need my mom by my side so I didn't call for her.
So sick kids is a no fun way to spend the day. But there will be memories and lessons in caretaking that happen- like the red bucket, the laptop set up on a chair beside the bed for movie watching, the specific blankets, and Mommy and Daddy's feel better forehead kisses.