Warning: Part one of this post deals with a not so pleasant subject matter. Please do not read before eating.
Throw up, vomit, barf, hurle, puke, or kyle (a euphemism I coined in the mid-eighties after working at a day camp with a camper named Kyle, who threw up a lot). Cleaning up my children’s vomit is the one thing I really don’t enjoy. I don’t like the way it looks or smells.
My 4 yr old was sick last week, really sick. She tried to make it to the bathroom (and did for the second round) but didn’t quiet make it on the first try. We have very little carpeting in our home, which worked to my advantage for clean up.
I really can’t stand the smell that results from the act of vomiting. In fact, I almost start throwing up myself (like in the movie “Stand By Me“), as was the case last week.
I’ve found over the years that it’s best to clean up this kind of mess with a “Chip Clip” plugging my nose. It hurts a bit, but it works for me. The clip on my nose and a can of Lysol works pretty well for me. I don’t smell a thing and can take care of what needs to be cleaned up. My daughter was really brave and actually got a good laugh at me with my chip clip on my nose.
In the end, my daughter went back to sleep (after a bath) and I got to work on clean up. It was really quite yucky. The floor outside the bathroom and the bathroom itself do smell great, though.
I admit, despite the crutch of the chip clip, I did alright with a situation that I can’t stand. As I was driving to work two days later (I only have a 12 minute commute and I tend to think really fast after two cups of coffee in the morning) I asked myself, “Why is it that when push comes to shove, I can muster enough gusto to deal with throw up, but still can’t deal with other things in life that smell a whole lot better?”
Perhaps it’s has to do with the necessity of a situation. With vomit on a floor you really have no choice but to clean it up. Other things like: staying up way too late, wanting to sleep in, putting off a conversation with someone about something serious, changes in careers, dealing with the reality of your kids not being “A plus” students, taking on a more healthier lifestyle…can all be put off for a while. Or, at least, that what I tell myself.
If we can delay dealing with issues we don’t like, then we do. Scratch that! If I can delay dealing with issues that I don’t like, then I do.
In truth, my approach needs to be more like dealing with vomit. If it’s on the floor, then it needs to be cleaned up.
I read a great quote from Avi Shulman years ago. I, of course, wrote it down:
“Until the pain of staying the same become greater than the pain of change, we will never change.”