There are several moments within parenting that you have these sort of out of body realizations: this, right here, right now, is HARD. Teething was hard. Nap sleep training was hard. Early days of preschool was hard.
But the hardest moments I have known as a parent are when my child is sick.
It is so difficult to go from the person who can fix pretty much everything to someone who is rendered helpless and unable to cure a sickness.
I got the call Friday morning from W’s school that he had been vomiting. This was out of the blue as he had shown no previous signs of not feeling well. He was even his normal chipper self at school when he first arrived. But then there was a tilt and he went from silly and happy to ill.
When I got to the school office he was bundled up in his coat looking ever so small on a grownup chair. A large garbage can was placed next to him – just in case. When his eyes landed on me my heart shattered. Usually when he sees me at school we have a joyful embrace, but yesterday he whimpered and remained sitting.
He barely spoke on the drive home except to whisper to me, “I’m very, very sick.” At the last red light before we arrived home he vomited and then apologized. My poor boy!
I got him inside, cleaned up, and in bed. I read him story after story until his eyes drooped with sleep.
LJ’s house had been plagued with the gut bug recently so I reached out to her to see if there was anything I could do to help W. She basically told me it is going to suck until it doesn’t. ooof
W wasn’t able to rest in his room so I made him a “nest” in the living room and he watched movies and groaned. Keeping liquid down was not possible. At all.
After the 5th upchuck moment I called his doctor’s office to see if there was anything that I could be doing. I was on hold for the nurse for almost 10 minutes. When she got on the line she told me that every single call for the last 48 hours had been about the dreaded gut bug. So it has definitely landed in our area.
All that I could do was try to keep W comfortable. I had foolishly been giving him water and the nurse said that for whatever reason water was not sitting well with this bug. W could have 1 ounce of pedialyte and if he made it 30 minutes without an “episode” he could have 1 more ounce. If he made it to two hours he could have 2 ounces. If he made it to three hours he could have all he wanted.
Being sick is just not something that W does well. It doesn’t happen often and when it does it is usually a cold or allergy attack. He doesn’t slow down when he has a cold – in fact he revs up and is angry and annoyed at not feeling well. This illness is the first time he has ever slowed down. I think he felt like resting was punishment.
When I finally got him into bed for the night last night he was so pale and fragile looking. He had gone two hours without vomit and I was hoping he was soon to turn a corner. There was more sickness of a different kind later in the night and then starting around 1am he woke up every hour to have something to drink.
He does seem to be better today, just enough that I am hoping the worst is truly over with. I scrubbed down every surface in the house and Lysol bombed the downstairs before I went to bed last night. If Mother and I can somehow manage to avoid getting sick it will be a miracle as I hear this bug is super contagious.
So wash your hands extra today and stock up on pedialyte. And send some healing thoughts our way.