Revenge of the Barfies

21 04 2008

I should have seen this coming. And I probably would have, if I’d taken a moment to mentally run through the most likely scenarios of what could go wrong, and the most inconvenient (and therefore most likely) times for it to happen. But I just didn’t have time, so I’ll just do it now.

Scenario: Neener and Roo come down with the barfies, and Squiggles decides that sleep-ins and naps are luxuries she (and therefore I) can not afford.

Timing: The three day window I have to pull together a complex writing assignment with a strict deadline, in preparation for a super-intense telephone interview for the job of my dreams, followed immediately by another tough deadlined writing task.

Yep, dealing with sick children while I’m under that kind of pressure would be very exhausting and nerve wracking . So naturally, that’s what’s happening.

It has been over two months since anyone in our house has been hit with a stomach bug, so we were due. Around the Blisterdome, we call it The Barfies, and it happens every two or three months. Yet every time, it catches me off guard. In the lull between bouts, I manage to forget that the end of one Barfies cycle is really just the beginning of another. And by now, I should be able to predict precisely when The Barfies will strike again by asking one simple question: When is the next important / exciting / stressful event in our lives? There’s my answer, no tarot cards required. Neener and Roo have managed to get The Barfies just in time for mommy and daddy’s Valentine’s Day “date”, as well as their birthday (last year, we called it their barfday), Halloween and Christmas. They get The Barfies when we have far-away family come for a visit. They get The Barfies when I am already sleep-deprived and stressed to the gills. They get The Barfies if I try to party like it’s 1999 and drink a whole bottle of wine in one night. Then again, so do I.

But c’mon, is it normal for kids to be such barf bags? Wait. Let me qualify that with some more information: Is it normal for kids who chew their finger nails, drink from other people’s cups, eat a bit of dirt, and lick their sneakers from time to time to be such barf bags? Yeah, I guess it is. So what can I do? Just wait it out, and know that this too shall pass. Keep multiple Barfie Bowls strategically located around the house. Feed them dry toast and water. Sleep with one ear open for that telltale 3 a.m cough that signals impending puke. And pat myself on the back for getting over the first of the three hurdles required for the dream job interview I’ll be facing bright and early tomorrow morning, in spite of The Barfie God’s apparent conspiracy against me. I’m desperately hoping that by keeping Neener and Roo home from school today, they’ll be good to go tomorrow so I’ll have a few less distractions as I try to talk my way into gainful employment. But if it doesn’t work out that way, I’ll manage. I always do. However, I will be convinced that the timing of this bout of The Barfies is karmic revenge for past illness-related transgressions: For sending the kids to school with colds a few weeks back; for the Christmas we triggered a complete and total multi-city Barf-o-rama by sending our traveling family and friends off puking on planes and in airports coast to coast; for drinking a whole bottle of wine at their barfday birthday party this year. Ok, so that one has not happened yet, but I’m willing to pay for it upfront. 

I am also crossing my fingers that I don’t wind up with The Barfies this time around, at least not in the next 36 hours. Doing a telephone job interview after tending to sick kids all weekend is one thing. Doing a telephone job interview while taking call-waiting on the porcelain telephone yourself is a whole other deal. But even if that happens, again, I’ll manage. I’ll Pepto-Bismal myself into functionality and show The Barfies what’s what. My sneaker-licking kids might be easy targets, but Mama here ain’t goin’ down without a fight, especially when my future career is on the line. If I know anything about myself, I know that I like a good fight, and that I work well under pressure. What does not make me barf will only make me stronger.





3 responses

21 04 2008
nanny patterson

very funny. then again, you also got a big zit on your nose if somebody in school mentioned the word schooldance. If the dance was cancelled the zit went away. karma ? maybe.

23 04 2008
heather d.

i am friends & business partners with your brother in law, and he sent me the link to your blog the other day (as i am a blogger too, but b/c of work, i have to keep mine private now), and all i can say is this:

you are an AMAZING writer, keep up the good work, and from what i read so far you are also an AMAZING mom.

i am a new fan, and i am totally going to keep on reading.

23 04 2008

Thanks Heather!

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