These past few months, I’ve developed a whole new appreciation for my own mum. I have always known that she is amazing, but now I’m a mum myself, I’m forever grateful and in awe of all that she has done for me, my brother and sister as we’ve grown up. For example, it never occurred to me at the time, but when we were poorly and she was looking after us, chances are that she was poorly too. But I never remember her being ill.
This time yesterday, Ralphie and I were battling a horrendous sickness bug, which has thankfully left us as quickly as it came. It made its appearance at 3.30am on Saturday when I shot out of bed and grabbed Ralphie as he projectile vomited everywhere. A particular low point was Ryan mopping my sick covered feet as I cradled Ralphie on the end of our bed (don’t worry – I didn’t get round to photographing this!). We survived the rest of the night and by morning we’d changed the sheets for both Ralphie’s bed and ours, and we were all a bit knackered.
And then I was sick too. I’d been trying to ignore the feeling for a good while, but it was inevitable. The nausea hit me like a tonne of bricks.
I’d decided to call 111 – so shocked was I at the impressive amounts of vomit shooting out of Ralphie’s mouth. They’d recommended we visit a GP and booked us in at a nearby practice operating on a Saturday. I must say, their service was excellent. But as I lay feeling sorry for myself in bed, I realised that it was going to be too much of a struggle for me to leave the house and make Ralphie’s appointment. So I sent the boys on their way and used the quiet half an hour to put on another washload, clean the floor, get changed, and curl up back in bed.
Thankfully it was a Saturday, so Ryan was off work. And even more thankfully, he somehow missed the bug. While I was still on feeding duty – not that my milk could have been much good – I was extremely grateful for the respite Ryan was able to give me as I tried to sleep off my woes.
I must say that Ralphie was an absolute trooper. I think the on-call GP wondered what on earth was wrong with him. Apparently Ralphie took particular pleasure in trying to eat his stethoscope! During the day, I limited how much milk he had to make sure he was getting enough fluids but not enough to make him throw up again, and by mid afternoon he was pretty much back to his usual self.
If only I had the ability to recover as quickly as him. I shuffled downstairs in time for Saturday Night Takeaway, and to top up on orange juice. By 8.30pm, we were all back in bed.
All we needed was a good night’s sleep. However, Ralphie had other ideas. For the first time ever, he woke hourly, until we all nearly lost the plot at 1am. By this point, Ryan and I were seriously contemplating leaving him out in the garden and putting him up for adoption in the morning. After another bout of crying, I swiftly scooped the boy up and took him downstairs for a bit of a time out. Seeing as I’d not eaten anything but a dry breakfast muffin and a pack of salt and vinegar crisps for the last 24 hours, chances are my milk was duff and wasn’t exactly satisfying Ralphie, so I also topped up with a glass of milk and an orange.
I don’t know whether it was my stern words, or the sneaky cuddle we had, but Ralphie finally relented and slept through until 6am. And I’ll admit it, I then let him get in bed with us (slippery slope I know!). Out he stretched like a starfish, and we bought ourselves an extra couple hours of sleep.
Ah, the relief to feel normal again! It’s not the most obvious, but I had a serious craving for avocado, scrambled eggs and toast for breakfast, and it tasted so good. Refreshed and full of energy, I was even able to tackle what can only be described as a ‘poonami’ that leaked out of Ralphie’s nappy. That’s what no poos for two days does, I suppose. I shudder just thinking about it!
And here we are, it’s Sunday evening. Other than wishing for an extra day of weekend to enjoy with Ryan (let’s face it, it wasn’t exactly his ideal break after starting his new job last week), we’re all feeling relatively rested and very much relieved.
I hope for all our sakes that this is the last bug we’ll have to deal with for a while. Poor Ralphie has already had his fair share. As for me, well I’ve realised that mums can’t afford to be ill. And if we are, then we have no choice but to make a swift recovery.