Tuesday, September 08, 2009

My Hero

( This was written late last night.)

Living with a 20 month old - you just never know what to expect. This evening Aiden, Brad and I were relaxing in the Family room after an enjoyable Labor Day, watching a DVD. I had just set Aiden in Brad's lap and the next moment we were experiencing the vomit fountain.

Everyone was stunned for a moment. No one said anything. We just watched as the contents of Aiden's stomach poured forth over his clothes and onto Brad's clothes and the couch. I was amazed at how much stuff there was, and it just seemed to keep coming and coming! Clotty, stinky, chunky, slimy - kind of like a visible food diary - a record of what he had eaten today. There was a lot of cantalope. And partially digested milk. And other things. I ran off to try to find some suitable ratty towels to help contain the horror but could only come up with a measly hand towel. That didn't really do much good. ( What does it say about me that I couldn't bring myself to use one of the " good towels"?) I really wanted to take a picture of the two of them. ( What does it say about me that in the midst of this carnage, the thought came into my head to take a picture? " Oh, and remember the first time that Aiden threw up...? Good times, good times." ) It was really an unbelievable sight. But it seemed wise to continue in the cleanup mode with all possible speed so the photograph was never taken. ( I did find out later that Brad took a picture of himself before changing his clothes as I was attending to Aiden in the other room. This proves the saying: Great minds think alike. )

We transferred ourselves to the bathroom - the bathtub to be more precise- where Aiden was stripped and cleaned, and refused to be consoled. Poor thing, it was a pretty traumatic incident - his first real bout of vomiting. It took him a while to realize it wasn't the end of the world.

Clothes were strewn about from certain members of the family trying to rid themselves of nastiness or prevent their clothes from becoming more soiled. So here we had three individuals, in partial or complete stages of disrobe, running around the house, cleaning up the couch- that was Brad- cleaning up Aiden and the bathroom- that was me- and trying to figure out what was going on and why he was naked but wasn't actually taking a conventional bath- that was Aiden- and cleaning up the random deposits of guck on the Vomit Trail all through the upstairs - that was both Brad and myself. It was a surreal experience. And the whole time, Brad was practically in hysterics because he thought the whole thing was so funny. Which did help to lighten the mood. Heroic fortitude in the face of utter yuckiness. Gotta hand it to you, Brad- you are my hero. Another reason I love my husband: the man laughs at vomit. I hope in the years to come, throwing up will always be an event of such hilarity. Eventually everyone got cleaned up and re-dressed, and now almost everyone is asleep.

I saved the laundering of the clothes until the men folk were abed. As I cleaned the "chunky bits" - as Andrew would have said- off their clothing, I thought of the fortuitous timing of the whole thing. The appearance of the Vomit Comet took place mere moments after I put Aiden in Brad's lap. Almost as if my guardian angel were orchestrating the whole thing. I don't know where Brad's guardian angel was, but MINE was certainly on the job.

Today, Aiden was wearing a shirt that I bought for him at a yard sale. It says, "My Dad is The Man." How apt. If it wasn't one of my favorite shirts, I would not even try to salvage it from the ravages of vomit. But I love it, and therefore it is in the process of restoration. Yes, Aiden, your Dad IS The Man. From serenely facing down the possibility of a dead grandfather in his basement in the morning, to calmly comforting his vomit saturated son in the evening...and accepting it all with a smile - laughter, even!- there is very little, if anything, that can faze this man. It's all in a day's work for him. What am I saying- this was his day OFF! Tomorrow he goes back to working with nitwits and criminals!


gretchen said...

Awesome story! Good ol' Bradley, seeing the funny side to it all! Favorite line: "I don't know where Brad's guardian angel was, but MINE was certainly on the job."

KJ said...

Yay for Brad!! He is the man, indeed! Why did this story make me think of Andrew as well (even before you made reference to him)? Maybe because he sees the funny side of things very easily as well :)

And I know I've said such things before, but it's true: You're an amazing writer and I love your blog posts! :)