Christmas was bad from the beginning. I wasn't into it this year and I'm not sure why... I am thinking the stress of finishing up the school semester maybe... or general laziness. Nevertheless, the Saturday after Thanksgiving passed by without the traditional purchasing and trimming of the Christmas Tree so we started "The Season" on the wrong foot. A week later Big Daddy T brought a tree home but then it stood naked in the corner before we decorated it. Sad. My Christmas cards sat in a bag for weeks collecting dust before I got the pictures copied, envelopes stuffed and addressed them. There was no trip to see Santa at the mall... no Fantasy in Lights... no traditional Christmas outfits bought. Even that darned Elf on the Shelf couldn't get his act together... he took several nights off... cozy and warm atop of the fridge or china cabinet and unwilling to brave the North Pole's freezing temps just to tell Santa about some sassy kids in Georgia. Those same kids were plagued by sickness during December... regualr flu and the stomach flu mostly. I nearly washed the skin slap off my hands in an attempt to avoid the dreaded illnesses but alas, my efforts were in vain. Christmas Eve morning I got up feeling fine. I went to the grocery store... cooked... cleaned and then decided to take a short nap before that evening's festivities. I awoke a different person. I knew immediately something was wrong. I was in trouble. Oh no! And to make a long story short I spent the rest of the night like this:
Ohhh... it was awful. I am convinced God sends me these experiences to teach me to show more compassion for my children. All 4 had the stomach bug and my common responses were causual "just go lay downs"... or "please don't throw up on the carpet".... or "honey, I can't give you any medicine you just gotta give it time." I had forgotten how horrible they felt. It had been almost 9 years since I experienced such misery... since morning sickness with My Baby Boy attacked and crippled me. But the stomach bug came back Christmas Eve with a vengence. I limped along for an hour or so but by 8:00 p.m. I was a goner. Poor Santa! Mrs. Claus would be no help this Christmas Eve and if not for a trusty elf, his flight may have been destined for cancellation! But Santa never fails and the kiddos woke up unaware of the night's challenges.
The tree was surrounded by the things they had asked for. I managed to drag myself out of bed and plop on the couch. No Christmas morning casserole... no hot, spiced, delicious wassail... no pictures of kids peeking out of the door waiting for the o.k. to see what Santa brought. It took me so long to get vertical and situated they were cranky and on the verge of a coup before we said "come out!" I had been sidelined before the annual "just one present (which is ALWAYS matching Christmas pajamas) on Christmas Eve" opening and Big Daddy just put them to bed best he could. Here's My Firstborn with some of her loot. She doesn't look so sad that her mother is in agony does she? Of course not... who cares about mom puking her guts out when you got cozy Ugg boots and a new laptop!
Poor Dreamgirl. She woke up acting as bad as I felt. She is NOT a morning person and at only 2... with all her needs and most of her wishes met on a daily basis... Christmas morning didn't have anything totally unusual to hop out of bed for. After some minor fits I finally put her with a cup of warm milk on my bed and turned on her shows and she re-emerged later to open her gifts at her convenience. Any other Christmas I may have cared... not 2009... whatever!
And after a long hour on the couch I headed to spend Christmas day alone in the bed like this: