G&T - 2-and-a-half M - 8 months
This week, I finally took a break from thinking about poo, as my brain was freed to focus on higher matters. Namely vomit. With a 2am wail of despair, M experienced her first proper puke. She had no idea what was going on, and was distraught as I lifted her out of her sick-filled cot, before she let rip again, covering me, herself and the bedroom floor. And so began our week of fun. The following day was spent with a tired, emotional eight-month-old, two increasingly fractious toddlers and the slowly dawning realisation that the next phase was unavoidable. Sure enough, the next night saw four outfit changes for G, then the following morning, any hope of T escaping vanished, as she brought up her breakfast all over the dining room table, prompting G to perform an encore on the floor. Don't you just love a tummy bug?
Having all the girls ill at the same time did at least allow for a little reflection on how far my babies have come. Dealing with the twins was, in many ways, easier than taking care of M. At least I could help them understand what was going on, explain that it was temporary, that it would help them. Poor little M, who had no way of understanding, simply clung to me, worn out and scared. Despite the crushing exhaustion, it was agony to put her back in her cot and attempt to get any sleep myself. Recently, as she's been babbling away, crawling and attempting to pull herself up, she's seemed so big, so grown up. But that frightened little mite snuggling into my chest was suddenly my tiny baby again. The twins were struck by a similar bug at about the same age. My bubbly little girls vanished for a few days, replaced by two tearful little urchins, who refused to do anything but cling to Mummy and Daddy. Two years on, they coped so well, bless them. G cried as she was sick, but straight away asked to go back into her cot to get her desperately needed sleep, while T somehow managed to take even throwing up in her stride. Yes they were whiny and cranky, but I was so proud of them. I'm hoping, however, that their courage isn't called on again for a while.
I lost count of the sofa cushions and cot bedding I cleaned, all the while swallowing down the nagging nausea that suggested I'd be next. It turned out I wasn't. Daddy was. As I sat in the girls room on night three, settling a still off-colour M, I heard him rush into the bathroom and, well, let's hope I never live to hear those noises again. Poor bloke. An intended business trip to London had to be postponed, and the following day, he and the twins spent most of their time cuddled up on the sofa feeling miserable.
Mercifully, I was spared anything more than nausea which, having been pregnant twice, I was well-practised in putting to the back of my mind while I got on with things, and by day five, things were looking up. The girls all had a bit of colour and even some appetite back, and Daddy felt almost human. So he rebooked his flights and, on day six, headed down to London. After a tough day with the still grumpy and over-tired toddlers, I got them into bed and finally breathed a sigh of relief as I started to settle M. We'd made it. I gazed down at her chubby cheeks and allowed myself a subconscious pat on the back for getting us all through this. M wiggled a bit, looked up at me with her big, beautiful blue eyes... and projectile vomited all over me.