So the shit storm came with a vengeance.
As I said in the previous post, my wife began to feel ill on Monday, calling off work because she felt "off" and nauseous. I wasn't feeling too bad myself and quite frankly was looking to tap into the uber gene most parents possess (usually moms) where I would be able to weather the storm and take care of everybody. I mean after almost seven years of daily exposure to the petri dish that is preschool/toddlers/kindergarten, surely I'd built up a tolerance to such nastiness.
I always marveled how my mother could manage to handle our sick family while being sick herself but then again my mother's motto always was that "she was too busy to be sick."
Anyway, so my wife came to me in the evening and said "that's twice," meaning that she had thrown up twice today. I left to pick up my oldest from elementary school. He got home and ate a Nutrigrain snack bar (which is par for the course). I still had the Hershey squirts and I didn't feel the slightest bit nauseous. But my tummy was rumbling. I hadn't had much of an appetite since the day before and barely touched any of the food we had made for the Super Bowl.
I dug through the cupboards and found a can of chicken noodle soup and ate that with liberal amounts of Ritz Crackers sprinkled on top. When I finished, my 6-year-old came up to me and said that his stomach hurt and I quizzed him on the status of his tummy ache.
Shortly thereafter the fun began.
My belly had been percolating vigorously since the soup. I began to feel flush and walked back to my bathroom where - with little warning - the contents of my stomach erupted into the toilet. I'm talking power vomiting with all the velocity of a fire hose. The kind of puke session where you are lucky to catch your breath between upchucks.
Before I could leave the bathroom, I could hear my oldest throwing up in the kids' bathroom.
The rest of the night was spent with buckets and towels by beds and keeping your fingers crossed that the bathroom wouldn't be occupied when you needed it. And even if it wasn't occupied, there was always the chance that the water hadn't refilled in time for flushing - which is always a pleasant thing to be greeted with in this frame of mind.
At one point during the night, there was a juggling of sleeping arrangements which found both boys in bed with my wife and me in my youngest son's bed.
I felt the rumble and sat up, grabbed the bucket, wretched into it and began my way to my bathroom. The second heave unleashed a torrent of shit down my leg and I made a mental note to put on socks as a buffer after this round.
When I got to the bathroom I found my oldest asleep on the floor, wrapped in towels with his head next to the toilet. I stepped over him, sat, shat and puked. At some point I had to pull my pants off and clean my legs yet still managed to hover my ass above the toilet when my stomach erupted.
I can honestly say it was one of the most heinous smells.
I cracked the window but a record cold spell was in effect and 8 degree wind blew across my clammy body. I closed the window.
Then my son woke and threw up on the floor in front of himself, waking my wife who walked in, squeezed her nose and said, "did you shit yourself?"
My house was beginning to look like the aftermath of one of my rugby parties in college, with bodies strewn about the bathroom and vomit in the air.
I took a hot shower and tried to conjure up some yogi mojo; some sort of mind-over-matter mantra to get me through the night.
And that's pretty much how the next several hours went: my son puking, my wife puking, and me shitting and puking myself.
So much for the uber parenting gene.
At least for me.
I've since concluded it may be the sole possession of the female species as my wife managed to tend to me and our son while still dealing with it all herself.
After we all were tapped out, my son passed out but my wife and I were overcome with muscle cramps and joint pain. I laid as still as possible in bed doing my best birth-breathing impressions, still searching for a mantra.
We couldn't sleep.
This actually proved beneficial as we took this sleepless time to tackle a few loads of laundry and some general disinfecting.
Then we tried to sleep again.
But I just couldn't. TiVo sure would have come in handy and I was forced to prop myself up in a chair with pillows and a blanket (and yes, a bucket) and stave off the urge to puke and shit.
Sunrise came and my wife called in sick for her and our son and the family spent the better part of the next day nodding off like junkies.
Today is Wednesday.
My wife has returned to work but the boys are both home with me.
I still don't feel too good.
I would like to find the cold side of a pillow, a dark room, and several hours of sleep...