Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Thank god February is only 28 Days

When I picked up my ten year-old from school today and he said his stomach hurt, I actually turned around and looked at him. I mean the kid is not stupid. Usually the time for moaning and clutching of one's stomach falls in the hour between 7 and 8 AM, when chances are I will blanch at the memory of last year when I sent him to school anyway and he barfed in between main lesson and recess. When we arrived home today, and he didn't make a beeline for the freezer drawer where I stash the single serve Haagen Daz, I knew it was time to worry.

Actually, it's a hell of a lot easier now and a far cry from the days when 4 kids under 6, and a traveling spouse made the stomach flu a historic event...

"Mom, I just threw up" must be the most dreaded words in the English language, especially at 4:15 in the AM. "It got on the bed", a close second. Within nanoseconds of hearing that someone had thrown up, I'd begin obsessively projecting the course of the next 21 days; the number of kids times a 2 day incubation period=34 loads of laundry, 45 hours of lost sleep, and at least 3 weeks 'til friends would risk being within 10 feet of us again...

Now that all of the kids are old enough to make it to the bathroom, and now that my husband has made enough of an appearance during at least a few rounds to know that chances for a little romance, much less a home-cooked meal are slim at best...the stomach bug isn't nearly as grueling as it used to be!

My best friend has an all-out phobia of vomit. We laugh 'til we cry about the time she practically held her 7-year old out the window by his ankle while careening towards home while, all the while, he hollered "I think I'm going to throw up!" She hurried not to get him to a bathroom, but just to the house where she could hand him off. Her husband has always drawn the short straw when it comes to clean up!

I admire my sister-in-law's approach. Raised by a military dad, she is very matter-of -fact. Even when her kids were barely vertical, she had a policy that everyone had a "burp bucket". Don't wake her up! Even better was her theory about whining: If a child is whining, he is hungry, tired, or sick. As a result, her kids were always either eating, sleeping, or barfing.

There has always seemed to be something about the month of February that has conjured the stomach bug. Since I'm committed to my New Year's Resolution to "be grateful", I'm dubbing the bug "Drastic but Effective Diet" and can hardly wait...


  1. Very funny!!! Isabella is in bed right this moment not feeling well! A Bad cold not the barfing thing,,,,at least not yet! Have fun with that! Hang in there Mama Gretchen!

  2. I like this title!!! Chief Chick is even standing up in the pic!!! TOO CUTE!

  3. When I was about 6 I tagged along to the doctor with my mum and my older sister, who was the one who was ill. I had to come into to surgery, and my sister had to have an injection. Mum shoved me behind her knowing how I was about such things, but to no avail, even the thought and brief sight of the syringe, and up came my lunch.

    The woman doctor was a hard case, and very pissed off to have vomit in her surgery. " When my children are ill" she said " I make them clear it up themselves. That stops them."

    A few years later I threw up on the dentist for insisting I needed an injection - he had a brand new chair which was probably never the same again, and regarded me with fear and loathing ever after.

    Anyway, thanks ever so for visiting and commenting on my blog, and please do use the photo for a collage. Thanks for asking.

    And good luck with Mid Chix, it sounds interesting...