While I’ve never actually deemed myself Superdad; showing this parenting thing who’s boss is one of the few things I consider myself pretty good at. Only procrastinating and identifying strange smells (thanks to my ridiculously large schnoz) have I had more success at over the course of my lifetime. After this past weekend however, my reputation of being a dashingly dapper daddy-duties dominator is in serious jeopardy.
Friday night, my best friend and I headed down US Rt. 50, across the Chesapeake Bay Bridge and into the tranquility of life on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. The trip was for his son’s second birthday party (Shoutout to Xavier Powers!) and the destination was his parent’s vacation house, nicely equipped with heated pool, hot tub, and a boatload of booze! The Chaney family was graciously offered a weekend stay, one that we quickly accepted before they had a chance to come to their senses, and so Jen and the kids headed down Friday morning to get in a full day poolside.
After a day that was officially verified by members of the Guinness Book of World Records as the slowest day ever recorded, my buddy and I got the hell out of town and arrived at his parent’s house around 8:30. With the kids practically comatose and headed for bed, it was time to unwind and throw a few back. We drank, stewed awhile in our own filth (I mean, got in the hot tub), and drank some more. After a few hours, everyone headed to their respective rooms for the night to get a good night’s sleep for the party the next day.
It was about 11:00pm probably, I’m not sure as the details are still a bit fuzzy, when we shut it down for the night and crawled into bed. What happened shortly thereafter is something I am not proud of.
With Jake in a pack and play at the foot of the bed, and Izzy lying on the floor next to me, I quickly drifted off to sleep, feeling just slightly out of sorts. I’m not sure how long I was asleep, but at some point in the night Izzy woke up with a bad dream. The sound of her crying roused me out of a deep sleep and upon regaining some semblance of consciousness, I realized something was terribly wrong. Not with Izzy, she was still half asleep, but with me.
As I rolled out of bed and onto the floor to comfort my little girl, I immediately felt the room roll and for a brief moment, I questioned my surroundings. Was I on a boat? Teacups at an amusement park perhaps? No, my body was very much grounded…it was just my head that was spinning like a top. I tried to focus, find some spot on the wall to zero in on, but the room was pitch black and the spinning only got worse.
It was as I sat there on the floor, rubbing Izzy’s back in hopes of getting her to go back to sleep, that I felt it coming. The excessive saliva, the uncontrollable swallowing. Maybe I was still half asleep myself, or maybe I was too proud or embarrassed to ask my 31-week-pregnant wife to get out of bed, but I made a poor decision at that moment.
Anyone who has ever been physically sick before knows there comes a point of no return; when no matter what you do to prevent it, there is nothing stopping your body from throwing it in reverse and sending back everything you had put into it. I felt that moment come, and instead of dropping the Daddy routine and booking it to the bathroom, I sat there foolishly thinking I could make it through unscathed. I failed…miserably.
By the time I made it to the bathroom, any hope of keeping my nausea hidden had vanished into the night air (and left a rather nasty stain on the carpet as well). Jen got up and handled the Izzy situation, while I greeted the toilet and handled the other situation. I was almost in shock at what was happening. I mean I’ve had some rough nights in the past, but they usually involved a significantly higher quantity of alcohol being consumed. Having not eaten anything since lunch that day, I suppose I shouldn’t have been so surprised. It was a rookie mistake, one that would haunt me for the rest of the weekend.
I suppose I had only myself to blame for the torment that was unleashed upon me by my friends for the two remaining days of our trip. Even my best friend’s father got in on the ridicule (thanks Chuck); but as is protocol when you make a poor drinking decision, I had no choice but to sit back and take it. Around midday on Saturday, in between partying poolside and chugging my 23rd bottle of water, Izzy asked me a question.
“Daddy, why did you throw up last night?”
I had thought that her semi-conscious state had prevented her from remembering the events of the previous night. I was wrong.
“I think Daddy found his kryptonite honey.”