Monday, October 30, 2006

J. Puke

JP eats peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, cheese pizza and bacon. He drinks chocolate (Ovaltine) milk. This is his diet no matter how much we push. Last night, however, he stepped out of line a bit and had steak. Of course it would be steak when he finally decided to eat something out of the ordinary. We were grilling out at a friend’s house and he said he wanted some. He ate quite a bit, actually.

This morning he drank chocolate milk, and on the way into school he threw that chocolate milk up all over his jacket, shoes and the ground in front of him. When I set GK down in her car seat/carrier thing to help him, he almost vomited on her, too. And when he was finished voiding his belly, he said, “It was the steak!” So I fear that any shot we had at getting a normal diet into JP may be on hold for a while. For a long while.

I don’t like to vomit. I know no one does, but there are a lot of people who willingly do so when they feel nauseous in order to feel better immediately. I am not one of those people. I will fight the urge with all of my being, hoping that it passes. This purge-phobia has carried over into a neuroses of simply being in the vicinity of anyone else vomiting, and it’s taken me almost nine years of parenting to get used to the fluids that come out of my children. For the first few years I could handle a diaper, but had to call in Kristy for anything that didn’t go directly into a receptacle. I still don’t look forward to it, obviously, but this morning I was able to maintain my composure as I snatched GK's blanket off of her to wipe his mouth and nose, and help JP through his ordeal. I realize this doesn’t make me parent of the year, not to any of you other parents out there, but maybe it does to him, and to the rest of The Quartet who looked on in horror as all of that brown erupted from his mouth and nose. Parent of the morning, anyway.

When C was born in 1998, I was overwhelmed by the desire to protect him. This feeling only intensified as numbers two thru four came along. Thankfully, I’ve never had to protect them from any overt, violent harm, though I read the paper every day, watch the news and surf the interweb, so I know the possibilities are out there. There are all sorts of unspeakable dangers lurking, but for today, at least, the danger was comprised solely of chocolate milk, stomach acid and a bit of steak. And I rose to the challenge.