It so happens that Mr. Simon is one month old today.
It also so happens that at right around 5:30 this morning, Roy jumped out of bed and sprinted to the bathroom. Seconds later, I heard the unmistakeable sound of vomit hitting the bathtub. And then Charlie woke up and decided that despite the fact that it was still dark out, he wanted to stay up. He wanted extra special attention. So did Simon. And Roy needed extra special attention. Super Leslie to the rescue, I guess.
Today wasn't supposed to start out that way. But once it started, it never stopped. Because once Roy threw up, I finally pieced together a couple of things.
1) Charlie threw up three times on Sunday morning and then was completely fine after that. On Tuesday, his poop turned light yellow (not to mention completely disgusting) and has stayed that way ever since. When I called the doctor's office about it yesterday, they said he likely had a bug working its way through his system.
2) Simon began spitting up quite a bit on Tuesday. He also started sleeping in longer stretches and was halfheartedly nursing between sleeps. When I told my midwife about it, she said that he could be gearing up for a growth spurt.
If you add those two things together with Roy's enthusiastic vomiting episode, then you get three sick boys, one of whom is only a month old.
And we all know what that means.
And I hate vomiting. I can't think of a damn person who actually likes throwing up, but vomiting is a special phobia of mine that I've carried around with me since I was a tiny tot. The entire day I've been absolutely dreading what I know is pretty much inevitable. I've even made my food choices based on how they'll probably taste coming up. Except nothing tastes good coming back up.
I am so fucked.
This stomach bug business is the latest in a whole laundry list of challenges that I've faced in the past month:
a long, unmedicated labor that ended in a C-section
a bladder laceration during my C-section
a four-day spinal headache
the invasive blood patch procedure to get rid of said headache
being catheterized for six days
the UTI from hell
being forced to stop nursing for a week (because of the antibiotics for the UTI)
handling a toddler and a newborn on my own
I'm not going to lie. It's been rough. But through it all, even as I sit here in crippling fear of the stomach bug that's sure to make me its bitch, I've been in remarkably good spirits. (Okay, there was that one time when I was sitting on the toilet bawling from the pain from the UTI from hell and swearing to Roy that I would never have another baby.) The truth is I've heard so much shitty stuff about what other people are going through, and I can't help but feel lucky. Christmas (my favorite holiday) is just around the corner, my mom's flying in on Sunday for a nine-day visit, I'm going to meet my sweet baby nephew around January 4, and I have this wonderful house full of boys and cats. (And fish. Roy is kind of obsessed with fish. Our fish are super breeders. They're threatening to take over the world.)
Watching other people go through hell has afforded me the opportunity to really embrace each moment in my own life. (Or at least try to. Sometimes I fail miserably.) I've spent so much time smelling Simon's head, looking into those penetrating eyes, and just drinking him in as he is right now. He's going to change so much in the coming months - hell, he's already officially not a newborn anymore, which kind of breaks my heart. There's a chance that I might never get to do this whole tiny baby stage again, so I'll be damned if I'm going to miss out on any of it.
So that's how I'm getting through it. I'm getting through it with the knowledge that the bad moments pass, and because of that, it's pointless to wish them away. I'm getting through it because there really is nothing like holding my sweet-smelling baby or my hilarious toddler or snuggling up to my cute husband.
I'm getting through it because this is my life. I had to change my shirt countless times today because of all of Simon's spit up. I spent quite a bit of time spraying disgusting poo off Charlie's diapers. I'm spending the night on the couch so that Roy can sleep in comfort, even though my back is fucking killing me and I know the cats will be crawling all over me all night. Somewhere in all that inconvenience and that cat hair and those disgusting bodily fluids, there's a kind of beauty. Subtle, strong. And real.
(Contrary to what I said above, I demand a fast forward button to get me through this stomach bug nonsense.)
PS - Happy one month birthday, Simon, you lovely little Scorpio. (Wish I wasn't so lazy about uploading photos to my computer - otherwise, I'd share some recent pictures.)