Oh boy. Well, I just finished writing in my journal and thought I’d finally go to bed. HA! That’s what I get for thinkin’! I went to go head in to sleep and realized that the sticky remnants of our watermelon pizza feast was still all over the table. My stomach had been hurting after eating it, so I went to lay down a bit while others were finishing. I had hoped, that perhaps, someone else might have cleared up after finishing up. Again. HA! That’s what I get for thinkin’! Naturally it was all still waiting for me at bedtime. I went with HUBBY to go clear the melon mayhem from the kitchen and to grab a quick something to eat.
Side note – am I the only one that has to eat before sleeping if I have waited too long after dinner before heading to bed? ‘Cause man, if I don’t eat it’s gonna be ugly. Gaggy attempts to fall asleep, followed by either a rough night and a wake-up-and-wanna-puke kind of morning or giving up and going back out of bed to find something to eat after all.
Anyway, as we cleaned up (mostly my good HUBBY while I ate my roll), we chatted about the day and the upcoming week. It was great! Then we were so ready to tie up one more loose end and head to bed. I sat down to tackle that last loose end – to gather the flannel board figures of Noah’s ark folks and critters and put them all into their handy little zippered pouch. That’s when the midnight mothering crisis kicked in. Of course! Because I was SO close to finally meeting my pillow for a much needed reunion. Duh!
I was overhearing some sounds from the girls’ room and wondered if ONE was talking in her sleep or FIVE was having an “I gotta go potty” emergency AGAIN. I couldn’t tell yet, so I shushed HUBBY and listened close. Then all I could hear was the rustling of bedding and then feet on the floor. Next thing I know, ONE is standing there wobbly kneed and bleary eyed saying something about TWO throwing up in the “junk bucket.” I asked her to repeat her message, hoping she was just muttering in her sleep and didn’t really mean it. Nope, she meant it and I couldn’t decide if I should laugh or cry or pretend it didn’t really happen or simply resign my post as night watchman and hire it out (the midnight trauma treatment portion) to some lacky that I could pay minimum wage to handle all the rotten middle of the night stuff. Instead I looked at HUBBY and asked if he wanted to take on helping TWO or conquering the “junk bucket.” He looked at me with the same mixture of debated responses in his eyes and I was pretty sure he was going to choose yet another option – run and hide in a nice dark hole where no one can find you until everything is already handled and you’ve had a good night’s sleep. I think the warning look of try it and I’m going to pounce on you in a less than tender sort of way was enough to convince him to opt for a strangled laugh and a giggly sigh instead. He headed to see what was awaiting our attention in the girls’ room and I headed in to check on our sad daughter, braid her hair, rub her back, and go find her some clean clothes to put on.
HUBBY poked his head around the corner between bedroom and bathroom to announce that she had indeed managed to throw up right at the “junk bucket” and I began to re-debate my choice to take this mess on instead of finding my own hole to go crawl into. To understand why this news was so unwelcome, you have to understand what this particular bucket is. It is a tote, one of those great big storage totes, the kind that we use to store all the outgrown sizes of clothes and other random stuff in the garage. This particular tote sits at the end of TWO’s bed, right next to FIVE’s bed and is the unspoken agreed upon location to dump anything that the girls – any of them – don’t want to put away for whatever reason or that doesn’t have a home where it belongs. It is also the general use bucket for the dolly clothes and paraphernalia since we put the dolly dresser in the closet. (THAT move was a backfire BTW. I thought it would give them more space on their floor to play, but all it did was leave an empty dolly dresser in the closet and a mountain of dolly stuff taking up uncontrolled space on their floor! Ah well, the best laid plans…) Anyway, this particular collection of hodge podgery in the “junk bucket” was NOT my first choice of locations for a kid to puke.
I’ll spare the gory details of sorting out throw up coated items and OK items. I’ll even skip the fun part when I realized she had managed to get it all over the side of her box spring and the #10 cans of food storage that is kept under her bed. I won’t even describe the Barbies that wound up in an emergency bath in the sink or the frustration of trying to wash the big tote the same way since the bathtub is currently out of order (blasted drain de-gunker last night didn’t do a darn thing). I’ll just sum the cleaning process up by inserting that I have a particularly keen gag reflex and cleaning up vomit is one of the hardest things I ever have to do as a mother! This was NOT my idea of pleasant. It did not help that I was already feeling gaggy due to my being up too late. I mean, I had to leave my sick child, and her freshly puke decorated room and go calm down for a while before I could continue. All I can say is HALLELUJAH for HUBBY! He may pass out at the very mention or slightest sight of blood, but tonight he was absolutely my hero! I am really not sure I would have made it solo. But thanks to the most incredible dad ever, TWO is cleaned up, her stuff is cleaned up, and her room is scrubbed down. Plus, I am in clean clothes, with freshly scrubbed hands, arms, face, hair, and feet (in other words, anything that was not covered by my freshly discarded clothes) and I’m sitting here writing this as a means of letting it go so I can sleep. I am plenty exhausted, but something about midnight trauma brings on adrenaline that has to be dealt with.
So, while I am sure no one in their right mind wants to read about “Katie’s Adventures in Gag Land,” I had to write them anyway.
I must admit, though, that writing this makes me curious what other moms (or dads or caretakers of others in whatever form) struggle with. For me it is throw up. What is it for you?