the forcible (hopefully involuntary) emptying of stomach contents through the mouth. It goes by many names: vomit, throw up, upchuck, gut soup, ralphing, and barf. We prefer “throwing up”, but I wonder where that term originated.
Anyway, night before last was the the throwing-up-on-the-sheets night here at the Hamilton house. And yes, I'm actually blogging about it. We are just the kind to laugh about the situation even while we're in it. So enjoy with us a tale of puke!
My dear 17 month old Samuel threw up in his crib twice on Monday night. Considering incubation time, we figured he must have caught something from someone at the Saturday night or Sunday morning service of our church.
I became very diligent to make sure the others knew of the potential for virus germs . . . which meant only mom could tend to Samuel and there would be much hand washing.
We were not successful.
Wednesday came . . . a normal homeschooling day for us. Robert was gone all day and I fixed enchiladas for dinner with frozen blueberries that we had picked at the Berry Patch a few months ago for dessert. Bed time came and all was well. But then, at about 9:30 pm, our 6 year old, Katherine, threw up. We missed the whole thing, and upon observation of ground zero, it had been no small event. She came downstairs looking terribly. So came the bath and Robert went upstairs to survey the damage. Did I mention blueberries? The sheets, the light colored carpet and the pink princess rug were quite decorative. When I got Katherine squared away, Robert and I began scrubbing . . . lights on, 3 year old sister asleep in the top bunk, and the careful used of chemicals, wet wipes and rubber gloves. Katherine watched Rikki Tikki Tavi and then Pollyanna until she had finished all she needed to do with the bowl in front of her and was ready to return to a fresh, clean bed.
At 12:30 a.m., our 3 year old, Elizabeth, threw up. Blueberries and enchiladas in the top bunk sheets of the girls room. Robert had gone to bed and I really wanted to let him sleep. I bathed Elizabeth and set her up downstairs with a Little Mermaid movie and a bowl. As I was cleaning the top bunk I heard the sound of her throwing up downstairs. A sleepy 3 year old doesn't always ring the container intended for the collection of gut soup. Sweet, miserable little Elizabeth nailed the couch, her pajamas, and the quilt she was using for a cover. Did I mention blueberries? (This time, amazingly enough, there was not throw up in her hair. I've added this detail for the amusement of all mothers out there who might wonder, as I do, how every child who gets sick to their stomach, no matter the age, gets it in their hair.) Rousing Robert at this point was inevitable. Elizabeth could not be left alone. Of all our children throwing up that night, Elizabeth really had the worst of it . . . eight episodes of vomiting accompanied by painful stomach cramps. After getting the bed changed, Robert was able to attempt more sleep. Three hours from the time of her first throw up, our exhausted three year old was asleep. I carried her up to her bed and was able to go to bed myself a little after 3:00.
At 4:00 we were both awakened by the terrified shrills of our 5 year old Joseph. He had thrown up in his bed, and on the carpet of his room. Did I mention blueberries? I carried him downstairs and began bath downstairs while Robert tended the upstairs mess. Once all was good with him and his room, Robert attempted sleep once again. I sat up with Joseph the rest of the “night”.
On Thursday there was no school. We declared it a family sick day. Temperatures, vomiting and stomach cramps filled the day. Surprisingly, it was really a good day for our family. We did a lot of sitting around, resting, enjoying each others company and watching a lot of movies. Here's some pictures of kids not feeling too good:
As for the mystery of how the germ spread to the others, here's the culprit:
We have discovered that anytime anyone gets water out of the water dispenser, Samuel comes by and sucks the residual water from the dispensers, thus explaining how the other three all got sick at the same time.