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Stuff I Wish You'd Quit Saying

The Vomit Blog: “We’ve been up all night vomiting…”

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“We’ve been up all night vomiting…”

I have been up all night… vomiting.

I address vomit in my manuscript. Two to three chapters are dedicated to my contempt for the stomach bug, and I know I am supposed to save a lot of my material for the book, but oh well. The first publisher I met with asked me who my target audience was. I said, “Moms who hate the stomach bug.”

They were not interested in my work. And that’s fine. I know it seems like there’s not a market for books categorized under vomit-haters. But, I can plead my case from my death bed. We have been exposed.

Lock-down. Code red. Bravo-Alpha-Romeo-Foxtrot… BARF.

My reaction to word of a stomach bug is something you might picture from a war-time movie. A soldier delivers the telegram to the family… screaming, crying, gnashing of teeth. This is how I behaved when Mother’s Day Out called me Monday with word that Sam had thrown up. The poor woman on the other end tried to console me. I think the next time she calls she will make sure that I have someone with me before she delivers the news. There must be a more humane way of telling someone everything they hold dear, every last thread of organization and peace will be flushed down the toilet, or spewed onto clean sheets.

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As I lie here now, my life is collapsing outside the bedroom threshold. My dear husband is a wonder. He can bring home the bacon, change diapers, feed humans, you name it, Justin’s got it.

But it isn’t the same.

 


 

Men don’t see things that women see. The babies keep breaking into my room. They get in trouble, but they keep trying. I hear a teen say, “You can’t go back in there! Mom is dying!” I am too sick to get up and thump that teen in the head. Besides, maybe I am dying. Maybe they should be forewarned.

Laundry is piling up. Babies are crying. My head is pounding. Nausea is my companion.

And I blame you.

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You know who you are. Average size family. One or two of you threw up all night, but you had places to be, people to see. You limp into the church potluck, looking less than lovely. Your skin is gray, sweaty brow, and your eyes glazed over. You put your macaroni salad down on the crisp white table clothed folding table.

Your kids bring in plates of warm slice-and-bake cookies – don’t pretend, I know you didn’t make them. And I ask if you are ok. And you say, “Oh my gosh, my husband and the boys threw up all night! They were so sick! But, the girls were so excited about the potluck, and of course, I had to sing in the choir and teach Sunday school. Hopefully, we will get to rest this afternoon, I am feeling kind of queasy.”

My initial instinct is to beat you with Mrs. Holwietz’s monkey bread.

If I was a confrontational person I would punch you in the throat and drag you out by your hair.

But instead – I bolt.

You heard me. I grab my children, our jackets, to heck with the casserole I made. It’s been contaminated. It is probably too late, but I have to try. I have to save my family. I whistle, giving Justin the warning – this is not a drill.


His jaw tenses, he scans the room, ignoring the conversation in which he’d been involved: Code Red. He doesn’t bother to excuse himself, he scurries sideways, eyes darting about the gymnasium. He form tackles a toddler and grabs the diaper bag. Two of the teens recognize the war cry. They stop, drop, and crawl through the crowd on their bellies.

They are well trained.

The clock is running, the spores of airborne pathogens are looking for a place to breed.

Dear God, not in our mucous membranes, please. As our 12 passenger van screeches out of the church parking lot. I see one of our children chasing after the van. I yell at Justin, “Just go, go, go!” We have other children. Survival of the fittest.

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The spores won.

It was too late for us. Day 4 I succumbed. From my deathbed, I grapple with my love of the Lord and my negative feelings for you. So I will use the last of my energy to send out this plea.

You should NEVER be out in public and say:
“We’ve been up all night vomiting.”

You should NEVER be out in public and say: 'We've been up all night vomiting.' #vomitblog Click To Tweet

You may text that. Yes, you may email that. Or you may say it over the phone. Send it by tracking pigeon if you must, but you needn’t utter it in person. Stay home. You are not needed that badly. The world will not stop without you. Dare I say, you’re not that great. Sunday school can be covered if you aren’t there. The Lord saves His people. Your coloring sheet of Zaccheus up a tree can wait until next week.

You’ve successfully taken down my empire with your terrorist ways.

I will recover. I sip Imodium from a chilled champagne glass. The Phenergan suppository is finally starting to work. I will sleep now. Someday, the Lord will lead me to forgive you.

Sorry, there was no scripture reference for this one.

May your floors be sticky and your calling ordained. Love, Jami

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20 Comments

  1. […] about….wait for it…vomit, was going viral. If you missed it, do yourself a favor and head over here to read it. Over 90K readers can’t be wrong about that […]

  2. Lol!!! Yes, I feel you, sister. Although I’ve only got a couple kids, I’m barely-hanging-on housekeeper at the best of times, really not a particular effective adult I’m afraid so if we get sick, it gets BAD. If I hear the word vomit, I run too.

    1. jami_amerine says:

      Solidarity!

  3. I’m not even a religious person, but Amen, Sister! I fear vomit more than anything. I recently kept my youngest home from daycare for a week because somebody else threw up! :s

    1. jami_amerine says:

      Solidarity!

  4. Julie vest says:

    Oh my gosh, someone else finally feels my pain! I hate hate double gate loathe the stomach bug. My son and I have Crohn’s disease and a “little stomach bug” can wreck us for weeks. The holidays are hell for me!

    1. jami_amerine says:

      Solidarity sister!

  5. […] two symptoms that pretty much guarantee staying home! If you disagree, please read this post “We’ve been up all night vomiting.” If a child is vomiting or has diarrhea, its important that those symptoms be completely […]

  6. […] Jami’s “We’ve been up all night vomiting” blog post […]

  7. […] things calmed down and the Vomit blog went viral, I thought, “Surely no one can get mad over […]

  8. Jennifer says:

    I get why your receive hate mail but let me just say, thank you! I’ve said it for years as we’ve caught peoples’ allergies that knocked us on our behinds. I keep trying to say allergies aren’t discolored but no, they insist it’s just allergies and I’m just being overprotective. Alas, a few days passes, the pollen count is low and I come down with those exact same pesky allergies!

    We’ve caught the Noro virus from one of these folks who insist on sharing their sickness. Our tiny tot was extremely sick for a week. This virus was no joke and the only way to rid the house of it was to purchase special surface wipes.

    Thanks for being brave enough to back mammas like me up who teach my kids to share everything EXCEPT sickness. .

    1. jami_amerine says:

      ❤️

  9. And this is why I made my whole family stay home from church today. Half of the family is sick. There’s a good chance the rest will be sick too. The healthy (?) children cried, but no, we are not going to church and getting other people sick. No. I don’t like when we get sick (always stories like yours, lice last year being one of them!) and I don’t want to pass it on.

    1. jami_amerine says:

      Oh no. Not lice. #neverforget bless ❤️

  10. As a nurse I’m not in this box of fear and loathing, yet I totally agree with you! Hysterical! Stay. At. Home. People. No one’s impressed! I AM that confrontational person and have been known to kick kids out of the church nursery- for the greater good. Lol. I adore this post! I’m totally curious about your book. Keep us updated!!

    1. That being said…. lice? FORGET ABOUT IT. I go into def-con 17….,

  11. […] It is without a doubt, the one thing I NEVER want you to hear you say to me.  “We’ve been up all night vomiting.” […]

  12. Teresa Willis says:

    I work in a dental office. The worst thing a patient can tell us is, ” My family has the stomach bug, but I must be resistant.” . No, they are just in the really contagious stage or they are carrying around the family’s germs. Same with “Everyone has had the flu but me!” . I just pray hard while I work and try to breathe as little as possible!

  13. […] we were up all night with a stomach bug… Jesus […]

  14. […] The reason I won’t say this is because, in this circle where I pen things and they are read, heard, or misunderstood, God is the key topic of my composition. No, I am not C.S. Lewis or Piper or Moore.  Yes, somewhere on the webernet there are prose about my relationship with Crockpots, Jesus Fish, and the “heavy” burden of DD cups.  Also, the crowning glory of my tiny career, the stomach bug manifesto. […]

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