I woke up yesterday morning holding a handful of vomit.

I quickly took in my surroundings, trying to orient myself as to how I had come into possession of someone else’s stomach contents. There was a screaming toddler sitting on his bed in front of me, his carpeted floor was dotted with stepping stones of puke, mysteriously going to the door and back, leaving one to wonder where his journey of bile might have taken him. And myself – I was in the center. Holding puke, puke on the bottom of my foot, sitting in puke.

It was 6:14am.

This was not what I had in mind for an alarm clock. In fact, I had asked Chris the night before to move my phone to my bedside table when he woke up so that I didn’t have to jump up and run in the bathroom when my rare alarm clock did go off at 7:30.

[I can’t sleep with my phone in the same room. We need space for our co-dependent relationship to function.]

Jumping up to turn off my alarm clock now sounded delightful compared to my current frozen position. Because what exactly does one do when they awaken to realize they are coated in a potentially pandemic contagion? One does not move.

“Maybe this is to save Noah from becoming the next Brad Pitt,” I reasoned to myself in my sleepy subconscious.

Earlier in the week I had rather inexplicably volunteered my son to be in a local commercial. I had been confused by my turn of events – it wasn’t really my thing to attempt to go out of my way to make my life difficult, as I certainly had done to my Father when my own childhood movie debut consisted of me riding on the same Merry-Go-Round for four hours straight with a doll that I despised.

The thirty minute screen test for this potential four-hour commercial shoot of Noah’s was scheduled for The Morning of Puke, hence my alarm clock in the first place. And clearly this commercial would have skyrocketed Noah’s career instantaneously, propelling him to become The Male Shirley Temple of the twenty-teens, and would’ve led to a life of screaming tween girls, Disney Channel sitcoms, addiction, ten million SnapChat followers, stringy hair, and being not-married to a scary woman with giant lips that could certainly beat him up if she pulled out her Lara Croft outfit.

(I know Mr. Pitt wasn’t a child-star but this is Noah’s story, not Brad’s. Keep up.)

So it was best that I was holding a handful of vomit. Because nobody wants Angelina as a daughter-in-law – I can’t compete with that. Even if I was the one who had held his vomit.

Chris had been downstairs about to exercise then leave for work, and he’d heard the guttural screams (whether coming from myself or Noah, no one will ever know), and thankfully trailed my sleepwalking puke-catching self and had the presence of mind to bring a trash can. I shook the contents of my hands into the receptacle and muttered something about Knox being a gelatin and Zahara being a desert and neither being a proper name for a grandchild anyway.

My second thought was my weekend. My enablingly-doting husband had arranged to take me away for a day and night, as I had been feeling suffocated by my children and hiding from them on a more regular basis than typically necessary. This hiding had been sponsored by a six-day nap-strike on the part of Noah, who would follow his non-naps with extreme sleep-deprived grumpiness and then fall asleep immediately upon entrance to an automobile.

And now he was potentially contagious. Ready to spread his lovingkindness to every family member and stretch this particular breed of hell out until we were no longer able to escape his toddler grips this weekend.

Was it a stomach virus or food poisoning? I secretly hoped for a mild case of food poisoning – food that he had picked up off the sidewalk and eaten alone.

I ran the list of possible pick-up points…

1. Chick-Fil-A PlayPlace (In which he blessedly didn’t require a rescue – but was that because he was too busy licking every surface?)
2. The Neighborhood Playground
3. Playing with Bird Placentas (That’s on everyone’s list of why-is-my-child-sick, right?)
4. Sunday School
5. Drinking out of a sippy cup he found under the car seat or under a park bench or in the trash can

I spent the rest of the day attempting to catch the remains of Chicken Nuggets as well as I had whilst sleepwalking. And with any energy left over, I obsessively crafted slipcovers for my valuables to protect them from my Valuable’s bodily fluids.

Puking Toddler


And then naptime came. I curled up next to him in his bed to get him settled in, and he immediately started snoring.

Nap. The sweet sweet aroma of nap. It took an upside-down stomach to bring it back, but…you get what you pray for.

11 thoughts on “Toddler, Interrupted.

  1. You earned a Gold Star in your crown for simply surviving a 6 day nap strike! I am glad he’s napping again. Feel well soon Noah!

    1. Thank you! Of course he’s sick today and back to refusing to nap. Worst of both worlds. Grrrrrrrr….

      [perhaps today is not my finest mood with which to answer comments.]

  2. Someone should show this post to all of those foolish teenage girls who are thinking about getting pregnant accidentally-on-purpose. They need to know that there is nothing cute or glamorous about cleaning up barf.

  3. I may have shared my 3 year olds most recent epic puking episode, She is a month older then Noah. Audrey has GERD but it is tremendously better then it was a year ago. A few months ago we stopped her medication ( ok the GI doctor did) and are managing her small amount of symptoms through diet. Prior to it being controlled if she was the least bit congested she would puke at some point, any cold would have at least 1 poking episode. I had forgotten this. I had forgotten pre-.medicine controlled puking Audrey. I was on my way home from a doctor’s appointment to get her checked out for this virus that she still had after a week. She started coughing and in my head I thought, hmm… She puked last night when she was coughing, hope that does not happen in the car. And with that I heard it. Audrey pukes exorcist style, it was on her car seat, beside her car seat, on the back of my seat, and on the floor. Not to mention her sensory issued little self that can never have anything sticky or icky on her…. The two of us just stared at each other when we stopped. I cleaned that car for hours and she politely told me that I did not have to carry her into the house. No freaking way I was going to, but sweet of her. She also has FPIES ( Google it if you want) but those are puking episodes I never, ever will forget. She has it to oat products and you can be darn sure she will be well into he 20s before I offer her any oat products. She was cleared 4 feet away from her during an episode and I so wish that was an exaggeration. Oh and one of them happened during library story time and with the look of horror from several Moms who would never ever have exorcist puking kids.

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