‘Twasn’t the fault of the peanut…Sigh….

We now know that although they can wreak havoc with a few members of this household, peanuts were not in fact to blame for Ben’s night of nausea (and more) earlier this week.   What a bitter pill to swallow, as it were.  After taking it easy on Wednesday and feeling almost back to 100% by Thursday morning, I felt more than cautiously hopeful that we’d figured it out.  Having an allergic reaction was a way better scenario than the alternative, and since no one else had shown any symptoms whatsoever, I thought our family doc could be commended for her insightfulness.

As a result, we went ahead with our original plans to have Todd’s parents and one sister’s family and my parents come over to share a meal and celebrate Ben and Chloe.  Everyone was fine all day long, and throughout the evening when we were all together.   It seemed like one more thing to put behind us, that allergic reaction Ben had had.   The birthday buddies had a fun evening and received several wonderful gifts.  When we said goodbye to everyone later that evening,  the kids were tired, but nothing more than the usual amount.

The next morning, however,  Chloe greeted me with an announcement.  “My tummy doesn’t feel good, Mama.  I think it’s angry like Benny’s tummy was at the doctor’s.”  OH NOOOOOO.  NO NONONONONONONONO! Yep, that’s a good re-enactment of my reaction to her greeting.   It doubled when Andrew came out of his room, grumbling, “I do not feel good, Mama. My belly really hurts.”   Patrick didn’t even come out of his room until much later in the morning, and he appeared as if something heavy had run over him–repeatedly.  He gave his assessment and returned promptly to bed.   Chloe and Andrew anguished on the couch and chair before they each had a little contribution, so to speak.   I have never been so thankful before then that Chloe hadn’t eaten much dinner the night before.

The ultimate insult, however, came when my mom emerged from where she and Dad were sleeping, alone.  “Guess what?” she said, not cheerfully at all.  “Dad’s been up most of the night and we will not be going home today.  He’s in bed sick.”  (insert HUGE sigh here)  It’s one thing if the kids are sick, but when the visiting grandparents catch it while voluntarily coming to see us?  Ugh.  I was so sorry.   It didn’t take long to realize that everyone who had been here last night had also been exposed to whatever it was that now spread to more family members–including those certainly not allergic to peanuts.

For the rest of the day, Andrew and Chloe slept on and off, which was the best course of action they could take.  Patrick slept for a few hours and woke up feeling good enough to eat, but the little ones didn’t consume anything until just before bed other that a few sips of Gatorade.  My dad literally stayed in his room all day, once the proverbial storm had passed.  Every so often, Mom went down to check on him, but he remained in bed, dozing on and off for the entire day.

Because Mom felt well and the younger kids did not, she volunteered to stay home with everyone while I took Hannah to her volleyball game in Richmond.  It was a huge blessing, actually, since the trip and games combined to about seven hours, and the thought of trying to console nauseous children on bleachers for that amount of time was a bit beyond my comprehension.  Thankfully, they stayed in the comfort of home, able to snuggle up in their own blankets and sleep restfully.

When we all went to bed last night, I prayed for my Mom’s immune system to remain strong.  Brendan, Hannah, Todd, and I were the only other ones so far untouched by the sickness.  Every time Brendan coughed through the night, I was sure it was going to be the start of his round, but he slept all night.  I was glad to be wrong!

This morning, Andrew proudly pranced into the kitchen and issued the proclamation that he felt better.   (insert sigh of relief here) Chloe dragged herself and her blanket out of bed and said the same thing.  (second relief-filled sigh)  Two more sighs of relief followed once we saw Dad as he climbed the stairs, looking alive at least.  Although not 100%, I wonder if he hadn’t steeled himself to just get out and go home before any other health calamity befell him.  It’s rough catching a stomach bug from those pesky grandkids.  Mom reported that she still felt OK when they said their goodbyes.

I just spoke to them and they made it safely back to their home.  Although Mom is reporting body aches, her stomach apparently made it through the drive just fine.  I predict they will collapse into their bed early tonight, which, come to think of it, sounds like a lovely idea…..


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