Baptism by Vomit

Warning for those with sensitive tummiesWe had a new experience this week. On two separate nights, our son awoke with a violent throw-up. He choked, he gagged. The first time he was crying a little, then I turned on the light in his room (after smelling the aroma) and he was so scared of what he saw on him and on his bed he turned pale, started shaking, and cried very hard. I picked him up and held him close. Chunks were smashing between us and falling to the floor. It was such a touching site, I’m sure. The thing is, it really doesn’t stink when it is your own kid’s vomit. I never would’ve believed. I think we are truly baptized into parenthood now that we have taken care of our child spewing vomit all over his room, the bathroom, and everything in-between.

What We Learned
Aside from realizing that we love our child so much his vomit doesn’t stink, we learned:
– The first time a child becomes aware of their own vomit can be a mentally traumatic experience. Our son ended up sleeping with us for the first time since he was a newborn. None of us slept much, but he was able to relax in our bed for the first time ever because he really needed to.
– You never know how many “aftershocks” there will be. A large yogurt container worked well for us to have nearby just in case.
– We should have held his hands away from his mouth when he vomited while in our arms. That would have prevented more clean-up.
–  Vinegar and water will clean up about everything.
– We could have gotten everyone back in bed more quickly if we followed a suggestion on One Good Thing by Jillee to make a baby’s crib with multiple layers of sheets and waterproof layers.
– It was handy to have some candied ginger on hand to make ginger tea. It worked well even though it was old. 1c. water + 1 piece of candied ginger microwaved for 1 min 30 sec, then let it sit until it is as strong as you need. Add cold water until it is cool enough for the child to drink. Another option is to add a little cold apple juice.
– We really didn’t know the cause of the illness so we didn’t want to interfere with what his body needed to do. We learned he is sensitive to heavy meals before bedtime. (read: cream based soup)
– We’ve learned there is a children’s version of antacids available for those with sensitive tummies. Note it is not recommended to use these until the child is 2 without a pediatrician’s approval.
Having a partner to get a load of laundry in immediately is priceless.

Now it’s your turn. Any lessons you can share from having a sick toddler?

Relevant links, books, and websites:


Adventures in Vomiting