Please do not read if you are a sympathetic vomiter. Also, this post contains SPOILERS: it could spoil your lunch, dinner, midnight snack, whatever.
Going out on a limb here and saying that I’ve done a lot of vomiting. No, it’s not an eating disorder. I tried being anorexic once. It lasted until I got hungry. It’s also not a disease of some kind. And I’m not talking about drinking too much or ingesting salmonella.
I have a delicate constitution.
First of all, I’m so very, very prone to motion sickness. I remember as a kid riding in the backseat of my grandmother’s 1974 Chevy Malibu Classic with my head hanging out the window, my face as green as the paint job on the Malibu. My friends now know that I sit in the front seat or else whomever sits shotgun might get shot…with something.
It’s not just me, either. My sister’s stomach is no stronger than mine when it comes to vehicular vomiting. My family is big on road trips lasting upwards of 12 hours in the car. We drove from Kentucky to Maine three times in my dad’s Escort, for instance.
Once the whining from the back seat got so bad, my dad (Pudra), said, “If I hear the word ‘barf’ ONE more time….”
We both lifted our dizzy heads up to say, “Barfbarfbarfbarfbarf.”
My sister (Boot) and I have often commiserated that we spend half our lives just feeling barfy.
Once in the first grade, I was getting a ride home with our neighbors. Sometimes Julie’s mom would pick us all up from school, even though it wasn’t far and we could have walked. I was friends with Julie, the daughter, who was sitting beside me in her mom’s old-school boxy navy-blue Volvo. Sitting shotgun was Julie’s Very Cute Older Brother. And beside me, Julie’s Very Cute Older Brother’s Friend.
We hit the first speedbump on the way out of the school parking lot and the noise I made can only be described as the noise you might hear if you stomped really hard on a duck.
Three heads turned to stare at me. Julie’s mom glanced in her rearview mirror. I scrunched down in my seat, feeling the embarrassment fighting mightily with the nausea.
When we hit the second speed bump, the lady jumped out of the cake. Only, it wasn’t a cake. And it wasn’t a lady. It was me and the entire contents of my stomach.
There was a Chinese fire drill moment when Julie, her brother, and his friend SHOT out of the car and ran as far as they could as though they had just discovered a hungry lion in the Volvo.
Julie’s mom made them walk home then took me back into the school to clean me up as best she could. God love her, I was bawling and barfing and she just kept trying to wipe up the mess with crappy Catholic school bathroom paper towels.
Boot has a similar story. In about the fifth or sixth grade, she kept insisting that she was too sick to participate in her choir’s Christmas concert at the mall, and our mom (Mudra) suggested it was just nerves. I watched the performance from the balcony. There was Boot, on the top tier of the risers in front of a forty-foot fully decorated shopping mall tree, halfway through “O Little Town of Bethlehem,” and she turned around in time to toss her Christmas cookies right into the fake fir. The telltale bouncing of the branches made it clear that she was not, in fact, suffering from nerves, but a bout of the flu.
Apparently we come by it honest. When we went to visit the church I was married in, which is also the church and school where Pudra went as a kid, he pointed out many places he upchucked in the church. Perhaps he didn’t pray enough to Saint Barfolomew, patron saint of pukers.
I often feel woozy out of the blue, though part of the problem is terribleOhio RiverValleyallergies which will inflame my middle ear to the point that I feel dizzy on standing.
Just let me have the front seat, ‘k? It’s better that way.