It's almost five o'clock on Friday afternoon and the last sixteen hours have crawled by at a snail's pace. Thankfully, not because I am burdened by our recent adoption-related decision (I've barely had a chance to think about it today), but because I have been cleaning up vomit, and trying continuously to de-germ my hands in the (vain) hope of avoiding Matthew's nasty stomach bug. He started vomiting just before 1:00 this morning and, since then, I had only a few half-hour snatches of sleep (can you spell the word G-R-O-U-C-H-Y?). I have spent these hours holding his head while he vomited and dry-heaved into his bucket, cleaning up sheets and towels when he vomited all over them in his sleep, propping up his exhausted body while he sat on the toilet with nasty diarrhea and vomited into his bucket at the same time. I have never seen him vomit and heave so much, or so hard; I don't know how he could possible have any more liquid in him that could still come out. Once, when running for the toilet, he couldn't even make it, poor thing. I think his intestines are determined to come out through one end or the other.
Matthew's actually a good, careful, and accurate puker...if he's awake. The challenge has been that he's such a sound sleeper that it's the act of vomiting that usually wakes him up. Frankly, even vomiting doesn't always wake him up; sometimes, he sleeps right through it and I run in, alerted by the sound of his heaving, to find him rolling over in it, sound asleep.
This afternoon, it seemed like he was finally feeling a little better and he took in a little juice and a cracker. He was so hungry. I put together a cozy little bed for him on the family room floor so that he could watch a bit of tv, and was glad when he fell asleep. I crashed, exhausted, on the couch next to him and fell asleep almost immediately - only to be awakened fifteen minutes later by the sound of projectile vomiting (while he slept)...the vomit landed in a stream on the towels I'd spread out around him and splashed further onto the beige carpet. Sigh. I'm running out of towels. Note to self: next time I want to purge the house of a few old towels or sheets, don't; they'll all be used, washed, and used again, the next time the stomach flu visits Matthew's belly.
Did I mention that, in the context of probably receiving a referral of a single child (rather than sibs), I couldn't help but think once or twice today that having two kids with the stomach flue is a bit more palatable than having three kids with the stomach flu. I felt a tiny measure of relief creep into my system, and will need to store that moment away in my brain for the next time I get sucked in to the grief of not adopting two.
OK, on that note, I'd better go and transfer the latest load to the dryer.