"Mommy, I want my water." -LG
"No you are all dry now, when we get home I will get you new water." -Me
"I spill it, I spill it I get all wet. I wanna get dressed." -LG
"You don't have anything to spill." -Me
"She threw up?!?!" -Paul
Lesson learned when LG says I spill it when not holding a drink, she threw up.
Tonight we had our first kid vomit experience (as in not spit up) and it was in the van to boot. Like many kid/ vomit combinations a large clean up effort ensued. I haven't slept more than 8 hours in two days. LG hasn't wanted to nap and I was just trying to survive until Paul got home so I could go to bed nice and early. Motherhood kicked my ass today. Then we had a puker. Paul got her bathed and in clean PJs. I cleaned out the van and ran to the store for sick kid supplies, which I forgot the biggest part of. So far (fingers crossed and various other superstitions) it seems that she might have gagged herself with her fingers. She is exhibiting no signs of further illness, we shall see what the night brings. Kid vomit smells so much worse than dog or cat vomit, I'm just saying.
My first gut reaction to all of this besides, don't puke because you will have to clean that up too, was I hate my life. I hate not sleeping. I hate cleaning up puke. I hate that my kid won't nap or go to bed at a normal time. I hate that my house is a mess.
Then I remembered earlier today I read about a family at home (who is close to a family that we are close to), lost their 12 year old son, Kyle, to cancer. It broke my heart, as a mom, as the sister of a childhood cancer survivor, as a human being. As a future Pastor, I am sure I will never be able to explain this away. There aren't words to explain this, the best I have is that it's shitty. That in moments like this I need to believe in the heaven where things are better and we all get to meet again whole, unbroken, and dancing with joy, embraced in each others arms.
Then I heard that my cousin delivered a baby boy tonight. A new beautiful life that brings joy to all of us who already love this little boy. Knowing my cousin, I know that she is holding her little one tight and they are learning to be together as mother and son.
This has kind of been the theme of my entire day. I got some great news about an internship for next year. I was really excited, we were all gabbing about where we were going and then I heard someone say they didn't get a placement. Then I heard that 3 people didn't get a placement. Then I stopped talking about my own excitement because I think it is rude and unbecoming to flaunt your joy in the face of someone who is hurting. It was bizarre. I was filled with joy and confidence as this was a personal victory for my confidence levels, I set a goal and I met it. It was simple but I haven't done it in a long time.
I don't know if it's because the hour is late or if all the praying I did in chapel today has helped me to be more open, but it just strikes me how odd this all is, the joy, the grief, the celebrations, the hurt, all mixed up together in this thing we call life. It's there all mixed together all the time but how often do we notice what isn't ours, how we are feeling. Everyday mothers loose children, everyday mothers give birth to children. Everyday people somewhere feel joy. Everyday somewhere people are disappointed. Yet God is there, here.
Tonight my friends there is a woman whom I have never met, who doesn't get to kiss her son good night, she doesn't get to tuck him in, say I love you. I am certain that she would give anything to have one of those seemingly routine things. As a mom I would argue that she might even be ok with cleaning his vomit out of the car seat and van because it would mean he is there. Yet here I sit with my cleaned up child asleep in her bed. I got to hug her, tickle her, kiss her up, take her to Steam Boat Races and that was just today. And it just doesn't seem fair does it?
Tonight I am grateful for vomit because it is a sign of life.
May you be blessed in knowing every single day is a gift.
This song has never felt more appropriate.