"Happy birthday, Mom!"
The tired, somewhat haggard mother looks lovingly at her children, who are aglow in the soft, warm, yellow light of her birthday candles. It's been a long month, but it's her birthday. It's finally her turn to celebrate. She's got big plans. A new bottle of wine. Fuzzy slippers. The promise of a movie that she likes instead of that damn curious monkey or that creepy blue engine again. She opens her mouth, makes a wish and starts to blow out her candles. She stops. Freezes is more like it. Something catches her eye. What is it? The shiny glow of a new birthday car parked in the driveway? A roomful of presents? An envelope containing a one-way ticket to Paris—her Golden Ticket out of town!?
No, it is a child clutching his stomach, whimpering, "I'm going to be sick."
Suddenly there is vomit everywhere. Not on her cake—whew!—but on the floor, the chair and the sibling next to him. Even the dog is covered in it.
She stands up, sighs and says to her husband, "Every year. On my birthday. There is puke."
She is right.*
January 2009: My first birthday as a new mother "blew serious chunks."
January 2010: Junior's stomach bug came on "like a mini storm front"—hah!
January 2011: I may or may not have drank too much vodka.
January 2012: I may or may not have drank too much vodka.
January 2013: There was so much vomit, I mused about my family's puke personalities.
January 2014: I may or may not have drank too much vodka.
January 2015: I may or may not have drank too much vodka.
* Kind of right. But wtf.
About me: I'm 42 and added another gherkin to our pickle party of a family. My husband Chuck, our 9-year-old Junior, our 6-year-old Everett, our toddler and I live in a town in Connecticut I affectionately call Mulletville Lite (aka my childhood hometown). My friends call me Nutjob, and they're right. In my husband's spare time he dresses up as a Viking and chases ghosts (and I'm the nutjob?). When I'm not busy working as a graphic designer, I lie in a ball in the corner.