Friday, December 27, 2013

On the Third Day of Christmas...

Oh forget it.  I surrender.  There's not a lot of 3rd Day celebrating going on around here.  We're just trying to stay afloat with enough clean clothes to wear and clean sheets to sleep on.  (Well, actually, there aren't quite enough clean sheets to go around, but it's sort of the the least of our worries right now.)  It's like the blind leading the blind around here, or more accurately, the pathetically sick and bed-ridden caring for the pathetically sick and bed-ridden.

It started Christmas day, got much worse the day after, and today, despite Clare waking up in a mess of vomit, we thought we were in the clear.  Not so.  Dominic succumbed this evening after he had already fallen asleep... in our bed.  This thing has just latched onto our family like a bad and needy house guest, has left no one untouched, and despite all our hopes and dreams, is giving no indication of departing any time soon.  

That's why I haven't gotten to blog my posts about Christmas cheer, traditions, and gifts as I've been wanting to do.  

Aren't you happy to know about all this misery??  I know bugs hit families all the time and we're not the first to endure this kind of suffering - and suffering it truly is.  But this is the first time in our family where it has literally been everyone.  I've never known what it was like until now to be the sick parent attempting to comfort, and clean up after, a sick child.  Not. fun. Not. easy.  

Even more significantly, this was the first time that our son, Aaron, has been sick with vomiting and other gastrointestinal unpleasantries since his April diagnosis of type 1 diabetes. When he started getting sick yesterday I vaguely recalled from my early diagnosis reading that vomiting posed particular challenges for those with type 1, so even in my own fog of illness I had the wherewithal to look at the "what to do in an emergency" magnet on our fridge and called the diabetes doctor on call at 7:30 in the evening.  And so began a night-long revolving door into Aaron's room to check his blood, into the bathroom to check his ketones (you can read about that here, if you're remotely interested), giving him insulin to counteract his extremely high level of ketones, giving him juice to counteract the insulin, and then all over again every two hours.  Poor kid.  At one point he even apologized that we had to continually care for him throughout the night.  Goodness, we were the ones who were sorry that he was up all night being pricked with needles and peeing in a cup. Needless to say, I didn't sleep well since on top of the fact of still feeling sick myself, I was so anxious about dangerously low night-time blood sugars and high ketone-induced ketoacidosis. Between Aaron, Russ, and myself we did pretty well considering this was out first experience with the whole thing.

Blessedly, the endocrinologist on call was immensely helpful the four times we talked throughout the night and he even called us this morning to check on how all was going.  Aaron's ketone check was negative by this afternoon and he ate a reasonable lunch and dinner.  I'm relieved that this first bout of illness complicated by diabetes is over, and I'm so grateful that Aaron was able to take it all in stride.  I certainly learned a lot, the most important being don't Google what to do when your diabetic child is sick... just call your doctor and don't forget to give him or her a hug next time you see them!  

We're still not out of the fray.  Dominic was sick this evening - a second - uh, make that third - time since I started writing this - and even if no one else gets sick there's the aftermath to deal with.  The laundry, of course, and all of the other things that are totally insignificant in the face of an extreme and all-encompassing stomach bug.  Our home is a complete mess - bits of Christmas still laying about.  But it hardly seems to matter - and I partly credit my Advent attitude of "no fuss, no stress, what gets done gets done."  Otherwise, I might be a wreck.  But as it is, there's stuff everywhere, and frankly, it's ok, because as the kids get better one by one, there are new Christmas things to be enjoyed and they're all readily available for the taking! We've had two days of Legos, books, dress up, bead necklace making, Aqua Doodle, Calico Critters, and lots and lots of art and crafts (and these things are flying everywhere to prove it!)

Here a few photos taken after we did a quick clean up...

Despite this ridiculous illness and this crazy, messy house and life, I'm feeling surprisingly blessed.  We had a lovely Christmas Eve and morning, and beautiful time with family before all this struck. Perhaps the 4th day of Christmas will treat us a little better than the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd, but if not, we're still experiencing the gift of Incarnation in our hearts (now we just need His peace in our stomachs). 

Without the baggage and wretchedness that I subjected you to in this post, if you're still reading...truly, Merry Christmas to you and yours.  

Word of the Father, now in flesh appearing!
O, come let us adore him...
Christ the Lord.


  1. Oh, no no no. I'm so sorry you've gotten the death flu. It sounds horrible. And throwing up when nine months pregnant is horrible. I hope you're maybe a little better today?!?

    1. Mary - I thought maybe all the extra abdominal activity would jump start an early labor - not sure if that would have been appreciated or not - but all seems back to normal! Thanks for checking in on us!

  2. Oh no! I am so very sorry your family got sick and especially sorry it happened during Christmas! Prayers for you and your family. I hope everyone is feeling a little better, if I lived close enough I would love to bring you all Jello, crackers, ginger ale and homemade chicken broth.
    *hugs* and lots of prayers!

    1. Thank you, Kathy! You are so sweet! Ginger ale and Pedialyte have been our good friends these past few days, but it finally seems like we've turned the corner on this illness! Thank you so much for your prayers! -Theresa

  3. Just discovered your blog via Kendra's.

    So sorry about kids' sickness. Nothing is harder for parents but seeing their children ill. Glad Aaron feels better, what a little sweetheart for apologising for keeping you busy.

    Be well and healthy! Thanks for having such inspiring blog, Theresa.

  4. My children and husband began throwing up Saturday evening before Easter last year and threw up all Easter so we canceled the 18 people coming to our house, froze the baklava and ham and didn't do much celebrating.

    2 months later my oldest son who was almost 5 at the time asked me how God could watch over him and keep him safe since the soldiers killed Him and He was dead. My son also was not very happy about celebrating the soldiers on Memorial Day.



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