Most parents I know are over this Winter and it’s many illnesses. I am one of them. We’ve had the flu- actual flu- and a couple bouts of stomach bugs. It never runs concurrently. Always consecutively. So as the single parent with one after the other illnesses…unfun.
I realized I reached my max when I woke up to a chunk of my bathroom cut out. I thought, “What the hell happened?” then the fuzzy memory of 1 AM entered my hazy and tired and brain.
We had been on play dates on Friday. We got home late and my sons are extra dramatic on Fridays because it’s the end of the week and they are tired. I was feeling pretty pumped about the playdates because one of them I actually got to drop the boys off and leave! It’s a family I’ve gotten to know well, and we’ve hung out a bunch, and I magically had two hours free on a Friday evening. I drove home with visions of happy hour and fun…in reality I played with my dog, cleaned my kitchen, and caught the first half of a new murder doc on Peacock. Yes. That’s where I’m at age 38 when I snatch two hours free.
I wrangled the boys to bed and stayed up too late finishing the murder documentary. We were scheduled for a playdate the following day which they were very excited about. This was also day seven since son number 1 got the stomach bug. I was so naive. So innocent. Thinking I was in the clear with son number 2.
I woke to son number 2 screaming and running down the hallway to my room. At 1 AM. Once I realized no one was dying and his stomach hurt I walked him into my bathroom and we sat on the floor because he was now insisting he was not going to puke. But I was still waking up and very confused by the screaming and not puking stomach ache.
He’s also crying and tells me his long sad story. He woke up and also woke up his brother, and “I asked him to go get you Mama, and he wouldn’t! He said No! He told me to go back to sleep because if I’m sick we can’t go on the playdate.” As he finished that sentence he puked. A lot. On the bathroom rug. In between heaves he was hitching his breath, crying, saying, “But I want to go on the playdate,”
I’m not the best without sleep. I’m not the best when I’m woken up from sleep. So I was still back on the screams that woke me up, why did he have to scream like that? My heart was still racing and my adrenaline was pumping. I rubbed his back and waited for the puking to stop. I also was thinking about our new carpet in my room and the hallway. I didn’t want to risk puke on the new carpet. This all makes me sound like a horrible mom because I was definitely more focused on the screaming and the carpet then on my puking son.
When he stopped he stood up, and asked to take a shower. Good, yes, into my shower he went. There was a lot of puke. I could not fathom dealing with it. I also did not want him leaving my bathroom and puking on the carpet. My bathroom is freakishly large- like as big as their bedroom- so I went and got his sleeping bag and pillow, and the meat scissors from downstairs and a garbage bag.
In these moments there was no future thinking. There was only survival and the quickest way to get him back to sleep and ultimately me back to sleep.
When I walked into their room to get the sleeping bag his brother rolled over and muttered, “Did he puke?” “Yes” “Well I can still go on the playdate!” then he rolled back over and fell asleep.
I used the meat scissors to cut the area rug in the bathroom. I cut the puked on area off. Put it in the trash bag. Lysol wiped and sprayed the entire area. Laid out the sleeping bag on the rug with a puke bowl, and now clean boy crawled in and fell asleep instantly. He actually told me he was happy he could sleep there so he would be close to the toilet. Not that he ever puked into the toilet. But he had good intentions.
He and I were both exhausted the next morning. And both boys were fixated the canceled playdate. All. Day. Until I rescheduled for next week and we have now been counting down to our make-up playdate. Cross your fingers. Everyone stay healthy.
The rug looks like some one took a bite out of it. I pondered my frame of mind as I was reflecting on my 1 AM decision to cut the puke part out of the rug. I tried to make sense of this decision. I think it made a lot of sense around 1 AM when I wanted to get back into bed, did not want to spend two hours cleaning a rug, and definitely did not want to touch the stinky puke. Then I remembered about him asking his brother for help and his brother refusing!
I went and confronted the brother. So he asked you for help and you said no? That was not nice. Please do not do that again. He shrugged, “But the playdate.”
This. Is. 7.