Today is the 20SB Blog Swap! Our topic was childhood vacations, and I got to take over Sweeney Says for the day with my tale of a camp raid gone awry. Make sure to check me out there, and check out Nicole’s post, which may or may not involve the word “vommy”, below.
This topic was selected with the assumption that we twenty-somethings are all proper adults who no longer have luxuries like “summer vacations” (barring, perhaps, the teachers and other wise souls who selected professions that allow for such things) and this is all about reminiscing. As my current existence consists of riding out my final weeks of living in Europe as a graduate student, while finally being not-in-class at the same time, this clearly does not apply to me.
I’ve blogged about my summer backpacking excursion a few years ago that is at least partially responsible for my current state of affairs, so it’s good to go back a little further. Also, since Lacey will be posting this story, it seems like a good idea to share a cautionary tale from my mother’s adventures in parenting.
This is my way of saying that someone who deals with an infant on a daily basis is probably the only sort of person who is going to have the stomach for this story.
The overwhelming majority of my vacation stories still involve that great American adventure: the road trip. My older brother joined the Air Force right after high school and when it was time for his basic training graduation, we couldn’t just fly from LA to San Antonio, like normal people. No, we would need a car! And with all the kids? It’s totally cheaper easier to just drive.
This was shortly before we moved back to the mid-west, so my family was a little rusty on the rules of the road for these big cross-country road trips. Back before we all learned to force ourselves to use the bathroom when it was available or be prepared to hold it for unknown hours.
Sometimes, though, you just don’t get a choice in these matters. The drive there and our time in San Antonio were all relatively enjoyable and uneventful. The trip home? Not so much.
My memory of the trip home is quite hazy, but my mom will never forget it and shares that lovely lingering trauma with us from time to time. The letting-you-off-easy version is that I now have a strict anti-Dairy-Queen policy on road trips.
The somewhat extended version (that you knew was coming) is this: between my fourteen-year-old self, my ten-year-old brother, and my seven-year-old sister, my poor mother was confronted with the largest number of simultaneously sick children of her life. While driving.
I needed to pull over every 2.4 miles to vomit, even after I was certain that there couldn’t be anything left in my body. This is why being all vommy (medical term, of course) is my least favorite of all illnesses: in addition to feeling like you’re probably going to die (on the side of the interstate, in middle-of-nowhere, New Mexico! Woo!) you begin to feel like some tragic medical anomaly. IT’S ALL GONE. HOW IS THIS STILL HAPPENING? I’VE GOT NOTHING LEFT TO REMOVE, STOMACH. NOTHING. LEFT.
I don’t recall what was wrong with my brother – just that we were all sick. I only know (rather than really remembering) that my sister was having uncontrolled diarrhea problems (you’re welcome, internet!) because she was using my pillow. Although I have no desire to ask about the logistics of this, somehow these pieces of information were related. Obviously that pillow was retired. (Although, I recall my mom telling me that we could just wash it and it would be fine, as if anything could wash that knowledge from my brain as I tried to sleep at night.)
And now, thanks to this shining moment, the internet can have this knowledge of my life etched into its little binary memory for the rest of forever! Isn’t that swell? I think I’ve failed at the blog swap twice over, because this is also supposed to encourage you to check out my blog. LOLZ. “Hi, I’m Nicole and I love road trips and trying to figure out what information actually constitutes too much information. You’re welcome, internet.”
Sorry, Lacey. But if you ever decide to take Sadie and any hypothetical siblings she may eventually have on a road trip (and you totally should) I strongly recommend you avoid Dairy Queen. And you should probably keep a box of miscellaneous stomach-soothing drugs in the car. Also, tell Sadie that I said to never share her pillows and not to listen to you when you tell her it’s the nice big sister thing to do because she’ll totally regret it later.