Since I've been with J I've had food poisoning two times, the first due to a bad oyster or two and, very unfortunately, not that far into our relationship. J, like a champ, slept on my couch that night while I proceeded to throw up 13 times. THIRTEEN TIMES. I'm not really sure how it was possible, puking 13 times, how my body could have possibly sustained such trauma, but that's what happened, I'm telling you the truth. At this point, with a few years of marriage under our belts, a child and two sometimes-disgusting dogs, it's not like we haven't dealt with a bunch of stuff, so when I started feeling sick a couple weeks ago on Saturday night I wasn't so much worried about the fact that J would have to witness such catastrophe; I was glad he'd be there to take care of me.
I was sick throughout the night until there was nothing more to expel and I became so dehydrated I couldn't swallow. Even a sip of water wouldn't stay down, I finally realized, so I lay there in bed, shaking and moaning, dreaming about tall glasses of ice-cold ginger ale I knew I couldn't handle.
The diagnosis was a bad stomach bug, clearly. Nora had been sick a couple days earlier, although hers was an extremely mild version of what I was experiencing, thankfully. She had been through it in the course of a morning.
Somehow my nighttime adventures had not woken J and Nora. We just had our upstairs bathroom redone and beyond loving the way it looks and functions with a passion bordering on idol worship, I was beyond grateful that the project had been completed that week. Because I wouldn't have made it all the way to the basement, first of all, where our other bathroom is located, but also because the new tile on the floor, replacing the old Southern Pine, cooled my writhing body and assured me that the horror would pass.
I mean, yeah, maybe I'm being a little bit dramatic, but only a little.
We all got up the next morning, me feeling wrecked, Nora feeling just fine and J feeling "a little weird." I started in on him immediately, my sympathy nonexistent, asking him if he thought he had the same thing as me, because if he did, we could not care for our child. That's what I said. That we could not physically "care for our child," and we needed to figure something out right that minute. I was in panic mode. I could barely stand up without feeling light headed. I'd always wondered what happens when both parents get sick and are at home with the baby. Just deal with it? Call the cops?
Luckily, J's parents live nearby and are always more than helpful when we need someone to watch Nora. I suggested that maybe we call them, since we might both be down for the count, but J wanted to wait and see. This is when I lost it and from my perch on the couch, in my sweats, covered in a blanket, taking minuscule sips of ice water, I told him that he'd better, for the love of God, decide right then and there whether or not he was sick.
Anyway, we're sitting there together watching Nora play and trying to determine our level of parental skills and illness when I realized she had a poopy diaper. J was feeling sicker by the moment and I was developing a martyr/look-what-will-happen-if-you-don't-call-your-parents complex so I took Nora up to her room, where I proceeded to start the changing process, which was unfortunately interrupted midway through by a very distinct feeling that I was going to pass out. I called out for J, who came rushing upstairs and took over where I'd left off, but only seconds in he proclaimed that was going to puke, leaving Nora on the changing table with her diaper askew. So I got up from the bench in her room where I was sitting with my head in between my knees, because, hey, you can't leave kids on the changing table like that. They'll fall off.
Somehow we managed to keep her alive for the next hour or so while we ascertained that, yes, J was sick with the same thing I had and, yes, we should call his parents, who, like absolute superstars, came over to our house to get Nora, and also brought us ginger ale, which I could successfully ingest by that point.
The two of us sat there alone all day, complaining about how absolutely terrible we felt, watching hours of television and, eventually, getting pretty bored. We got on the Internet and chatted with friends who made us laugh. We browsed Facebook. We read blogs.
And somehow, I know it sounds crazy, I think our sick day recharged us a little. No work, no baby, no errands, no productivity of any kind. Not because we were being lazy, but because we couldn't do anything at all, and therefore felt no guilt for laying low and accomplishing nothing. Plus, we took care of each other, if "taking care of each other" on that particular day meant telling the other person not to worry, because "you are not going to die."
I mean, don't get me wrong, I'm not anxious to lie down on the bathroom tiles again anytime soon with the world spinning and my stomach churning (although I really do love that new bathroom) but as far as the sickest of sick days go, that one was...kind of nice.