Sunday, December 07, 2014

Before it gets better it's got to get...

Benjamin had a fever on Wednesday night and a fever on Thursday night, but other than a lingering cough (lingering from his three weeks of croup) he seemed fine all day Friday and Saturday. Saturday night, though, he kept waking up and crying, which is rather uncharacteristic for him (the crying, not the waking up). He was a grumpy little monster in the morning, but we got him dressed and ready for church, anyway.

He did fine through sacrament meeting—aside from purposely kicking and hitting his sisters whenever he could manage it—but I took him to class with me instead of sending him to nursery because his cough was sounding a little too nasty.

I'd love to be (and occasionally try to be) the kind of mom who stays home with her kids when they're sick, but, uh, when they have a cough for a month you start just ignoring it and going out anyway.

Right in the middle of the lesson, I looked over to see Benjamin gagging. He'd been munching on a motley assortment of crackers: Angry Birds graham crackers, cheddar penguins, gold fish, and crasins (those aren't technically crackers). I wasn't sure if he was choking or what, so I said, "Are you okay, Benji?"


In response he...threw up all over the floor (and himself).

I immediately entered frazzled mode.

Uh...take his shirt off? That's probably a good start.

Throw a napkin over the bulk of the mess? Yeah, yeah. That's...sanitary.

Ummmm...leave him in the classroom with a bunch of five year olds (and my co-teacher, so...totally responsible) to run for some paper towels? Sure.

Carry him to the bathroom to sponge him off? A definite must.

Somewhere in all that—literal—mess, I phoned Andrew (who was busy teaching his class) and said, "We have to go home...now. Meet me here."

That conversation sent a chill up his spine, rivaling only the time I was pregnant with Rachel and told him I wanted a taco when we got home...but he thought I said "I want to talk when we get home." He sat in silence the whole ride home from campus that day and was greatly relieved when I ran to the freezer and pulled out a burrito instead of sitting him down for a "talk."

Anyway, I ran into my friend Annie in the hallway who asked if there was anything she could do. It was pretty obvious what was going on since I was hauling a half-naked, dripping-with-vomit child to the bathroom.

"Can you find a sub for Andrew's class?" I asked.

"You got it!" she said.

She also sent someone to find some rags and a carpet cleaning solution.

I finished scrubbing the carpet, scrounged around in the diaper bag until I found a t-shirt for Benjamin, and arranged rides for the girls to come home (with Annie). Miriam was like, "I'm fine. I don't want to go home yet! We're singing in church next week! We have to rehearse!" Rachel also wanted to stay, so... Andrew got the girls' carseats out of the van, collected Benjamin and got him buckled in while I deposited the trash bag of biohazardous waste in the garbage bin outside.

We debated having Andrew come back to pick the girls up. But Benjamin threw up near the end of the second hour of church and by the time we were finished cleaning things up we only had fifty minutes left of church anyway...but it's a twenty minute drive to our house. It just didn't seem worth it to turn back around to pick up the girls, so I was grateful for a volunteer to take them home!

Benjamin and I settled in for a three hour nap.

I'm always up for a nap these days. Benjamin isn't. But today he definitely was.

When we woke up, Andrew was napping on the couch and the girls were playing quietly in their room. Oh, and lunch was left out on the table.

Benjamin grabbed a plate and started helping himself to leftover lunch.

"Whoa, whoa, whoa!" I cautioned. "You might be hungry, but you also just threw up!"

"Me not sick!" Benjamin insisted. "Me see betty!"

"You might feel better but I think you should take things slowly."

We stuck him on the BRAT diet and gave him leftover rice and half a banana for dinner. He cried about not being allowed green beans or tomatoes or ham. The girls accused us of starving him.

"We're not starving him!" I said. "Those are just the things you eat when you're sick. It's called the BRAT diet—bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast. Until I'm sure his stomach has calmed down I don't want to feed him anything too crazy."

I read somewhere that more substantial meals (with fat and fiber and...content) can help you get over stomach issues faster, but also, throwing up tomatoes and green beans can be scary when you're little. Throwing up rice, however, is colourless and mushy and gentle. BRAT diet wins.

"Me get bowl!" Benjamin volunteered after hearing his diet listed out.

"For what?" Andrew asked.

"Appy-sauce!" Benjamin cheered.

We gave him some applesauce, too.

He seemed pretty okay after dinner. We skyped with Andrew's parents, put away the dishes, and gathered in the living room to hear the story of Krampus before having scriptures and prayer. I had just finished reading the story and was warning the children about spending Christmas at Grandma and Grandpa's house, and they had just finished saying, "We're only a quarter German!" (if they were Rachel—though I think they're one-eighth, really) or "Only our last name is German!" (if they were Miriam), when Benjamin threw up.

He was lying facedown on the couch when he did so. He was covered in vomit from his head to his tummy—his face was covered in it, and it was even in his hair, and it was also all over the couch (duh).

I ran for towels and started the bathtub and moved load #1 of vomit laundry from the washer to the dryer. Then I got to bathe Benjamin while Andrew scrubbed the couch (I definitely the better end of the deal...but I also cleaned up the carpet at church so we'll call it even).

"Well, now we know he wasn't just choking at church," Andrew pointed out.

I'm so glad we cleared that up!

Once all the kids were in their jammies we settled in for scriptures and prayer and stories and then we sent the girls to bed. I didn't tell Benjamin to go to bed because he took a three hour nap and had only been awake for about two hours (maybe three) by this point, but he came up to Andrew and said, "Me go bed, too, 'kay?"

It was the most pathetic thing I've ever heard a two-year-old say.

We tucked him into "Mommy bed" (because if tonight is anything like last night he'll wake up crying every couple of hours) and left the bathroom light on because it was too dark for him (but even that ended up being too bright so now just the closet light is on) and he fell asleep within five minutes of going down (which for him is amazing).

I hope this is just a Benjamin thing and that no one else gets it.

We put the girls to bed with throw up bowls just in case because they were complaining of upset tummies. They might be getting sick, but I hope they aren't. Having someone vomit around you is kind of like hearing the word lice. Hear the word lice and you start wondering if your head is itchy. Have someone vomit next to you and you start wondering if your stomach is queasy. I'm hoping that's all their upset tummies are—a reaction to seeing someone else throw up.

1 comment:

  1. What an awful day at church! Its bad enough to clean up throw up at home. Church? Yuck! I hope Benjamin is feeling better.

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