— by Eliza M. Askins
All loaded for an overnight trip. I even managed to pack lightly for the children and I myself. Everything was in one duffle bag with a little extra space. Everyone was buckled. Everyone had their chewy (crocheted square from grandma that is much easier to travel with instead of full blankets). Everyone excited to sleepover at an aunt and uncle’s house.
We even left the house show-ready just in case someone called for a Sunday walk through.
About ten miles out of town the sound and smell of vomit crept to the front of the van.
The poor boy was green and tired. The others upon whiff requested bags also. Pull over, send back wipes and napkins, roll down window and turn A/C on full blast. Take a moment to regroup and turn back toward home.
Disappointed that we won't see family, we scramble for dinner and try to keep kiddos separate so it doesn't spread.
You see, I just told a toddler the night before, "don't yack on me, I don't handle puke up well."
And yet, here I sit typing with the smell still lingering after hosing clothing, vacuuming a van, detailing a car seat, hounding children to keep their barf buckets with them, and ordering cheese pizza because I couldn't bear to serve everyone else the Mac N Cheese the sick one coveted. He picked it early in the week at the store with such excitement that he has to be allowed to enjoy it when he is well.
Thanks be to God that this happened close to home. We were not miles away; we were not staying with someone we just met; we were not in a house with lots of someone else's children to infect; and we caught it before passing it to our own relatives. And so far, only one has fallen to the yack.
So please yackety, yack and don't come back before the morning light.