30 October 2008

Heartbreak and Headache

Peacefully dead asleep. It is the middle of the night. Gabriel was feeling sort of off last night; he's snuggled down in bed next to me. Suddenly and without warning, I'm jarred awake by the warm, chunky wetness spewing from Gabriel. In my hair. On my pillow. On my ear. On my neck. On my face. All over. Bleary eyed, I rush him to the bathroom. He vomits twice more on the bathroom floor before we get to the toilet. By then he's all puked out.
Sad and bewildered and pale and hot and covered in ick. I strip him down naked. Mop him up as best I can. His skin looks so translucent and delicate, I don't want to scrub him too hard. I put him in a fresh pull-up, sit him on the couch wrapped in a clean blanket and holding an empty bowl, in case something else decides to come up. If you need to throw up make sure you use the bowl. I set about the business of cleaning up so that we can get back to bed. Strip the bed, shove everything into the wash. I don't care about instructions, everything's getting washed on hot. The mattress is wet. It's after 1am and I can't deal with this. After a cursory and undoubtedly inefficient scrubbing of the area, I flip and rotate the mattress so the offending corner is upside-down by my feet. Fresh sheets. Pull out the spare comforter. The pillows are in the wash. Make the bed as best I can. But my hair. My face. My clothes. If I don't need a shower, I'm not sure who does. I tear off my clothes on the way to the shower.
The bathroom.
I'm on my hands and knees scrubbing puke in my chonies at 1:30 on a Thursday morning.
Finally, I shower. I get into fresh clothes.
It has been awhile since I left Gabriel bundled on the couch.
In the living room, he is curled into a ball under his blankie, in nothing but training pants, his face is carefully over the bowl I left him with. He is shivering. He is passed out. He is burning up.
I put him into fresh pajamas. I wake him. Does he need to throw up again? Does he need to use the potty? Absolutely, when he is this sick, he is sleeping with me, so I scoop him up and take him back to my room. Can he have some water?
Throughout the rest of the night when he stirs I'm instantly alert.
Do you need to throw-up?
Please don't throw up in bed.
We wake up this morning. He is fine. He's acting fine. He's in a good mood. He has some toast. He looks fine.
I take his temperature. No fever. I ask him how he feels.
"Um. Good?"
Does he want to go to school today?
Is he sure that he feels okay?
He doesn't have a fever.
Did I dream last night?
I decide to take him to school. I drop him off at 7:30, as usual. He is fine.
The preschool director calls at 8:15. Just 45 minutes after I last saw him, looking perfectly healthy.
You need to come get Gabriel. He is NOT okay.
By the time I get to my car and get to his school (I don't drive to work), it is 9:30. He is passed out in the corner in the large playroom, obviously suffering. Obviously sick. His fever is high. His cheeks are flushed. His breath hot. His fingers icy.
I wouldn't have left him if I thought he was this sick.
I know. Hopefully we'll see you guys Monday?
We get home.
He is resting.

Did you know that Mr. Halloween is actually Steenky Bee? She's sending me a Spider-Man costume, which will hopefully make this whole day seem like....less.


  1. awwww...I feel for you and your little guy...we are a family of pukers...can't count how many times I have had a night like yours....take care...drink lots of water....smooches

  2. I don't know what it is about Halloween. Misch has NEVER been well on the damn holiday. Last year we ended up at the emergency room after midnight - NOT the place you want to be on halloween night. Misch wouldn't stop throwing up.
    I feel so bad for you and Gabe right now I don't know what to do honey. Hopefully it is some sort of 24 hour thing and you WON'T get it.

  3. oh poor yous twos!!! those nights (and i've had em, of course, with three kids) suck. but leave it to Steenky to make it better, what a sweetie pie.

  4. Lots of liquids...popsicles make it better, too! Boy can keep those down when nothing else will stay!

    Poor baby!

  5. Is Mr. Halloween like the Great Pumpkin?

    I hope he's feeling well enough to actually do the whole trick or treat thing. =(

  6. Been. There. I dont know how they can turn on and off their fevers like that, but they do. My mom always followed the rule that you decide the night before if they are too sick to go to school the next day. That way you know for sure you wont be called back. This logic has given me a few really hard days where they were home and perfectly fine but also probably saved me from having to drop everything and rush back to pick them up.

  7. Poor little man. I've had those days where you think their fine then, BAM! not so much. This happened this summer. We got a little cocky and ended up passing the flu on to many many relatives. From what I hear, it only lasts about 24 hours. Hopefully your little bug can trick-or-treat!

  8. I'm glad she was able to come through for you, especially after life upped the ante on you like this.

    I guess this just makes me that much more glad every moment I'm NOT covered in puke. Was that your intention? Regardless, thanks-- it's a new world!

    Have a great day, and if he can't keep any candy down tonight, there's always tomorrow. Or your own stomach, whichever comes first.

  9. Ugh. If that had happened to me, I would have been puking right back onto my kid.

  10. I've been there! it's amazing how they recover in the morning and then, NOT. Lil moonspun had croup every winter when she was young. I'd be in the shower with her sitting on a stool so the steam would make her breathe and stop the seal coughing. Then in the mornign she'd be fine and I'd inevitably wonder if I had dreamed it.
    Just remember fever is his body's way of fighting whatever he has. Happy Halloween. Hope he is better!

  11. Ugh...sounds like our Christmas Eve. Daughter ALWAY pukes at Christmas.

    Course...I've never had my head puked on in the middle of the night....so I think you win the prize for ick.

  12. Ugh...sounds like our Christmas Eve. Daughter ALWAY pukes at Christmas.

    Course...I've never had my head puked on in the middle of the night....so I think you win the prize for ick.

  13. Simon has a spider man costume. he got it at our yard sale. Member?

  14. Oh my gosh that is awful. I cannot imagine what it was like waking up to that scene and feeling. Ick. You are a great mom :)

  15. My son is not much of a puker, but the one time he did was right on me when I was sound asleep. Hope he got to enjoy his Halloween!

  16. My son is not much of a puker, but the one time he did was right on me when I was sound asleep. Hope he got to enjoy his Halloween!