I am writing this letter as a place marker, so that I will always remember this day. Today, (on your father's birthday) you threw up directly into my face. You did so with great force, and also volume. Your precision was shocking for an 8 month old baby. Your dinner, was peas.
|Here is a drawing I did of you puking directly into my face.|
Why am I telling you this? Because never, for the rest of your life, will I let you live this down. When you ask me why you can't borrow my self driving car to go on your first date, I will say it is because you threw up in my face.
Let me give you some context. It was your father's birthday and I was determined that we should all have a good time. I got you and your sister dressed in adorable outfits, and I went so far as to put on makeup. Do you know how hard it is for a mother of two young children to put on makeup? I'm lucky if I can put on pants.* On this occasion, not only was I wearing pants, but I had on boots with a heel. I am basically a hero.
*Last weekend I was in my cousin's wedding, and a trained beauty professional was talking about waxing eyebrows, something I haven't done in literally a year. All I could think was "oh shit, should I feel shame at my lack of personal grooming around this beautiful woman? And then I was like, "Naw, I've got on pants."
Because my valor knowst no limits, I also decided to take you and your sister with us out to a trendy Durham restaurant. There we sat, a portrait of an adorable family, drinking hot toddies, eating local cheeseburgers, and wearing pants-- all of us.
I SHARED MY BURGER WITH YOU, SON. Out of love, and also a strong desire for you to not scream in public, I gave you pieces of my local, organic cheeseburger. I did not share my hot toddy with you, although in retrospect maybe I should be more open to potential solutions that will help you sleep through the night. As we waited for dessert, you began to get fussy, but I was like NOT TODAY, KID. We are going to have a NICE FAMILY DINNER, DAMMIT. Then, I expertly flew you like superman above my head.
I am such a great mom, I told myself as I zoomed you, precariously above my makeup-ed face, look how I calmed this kid down to stop him from ruining Sean's special birthday dinner! That's when you did it. You vomited. (Not spit up, not drool, but REAL ACTUAL PROJECTILE STYLE VOMIT) directly into my face.
I spluttered. I spat. I groped blindly for the napkins Sean was quickly handing my way. You gurgled contentedly. Mommy, you're silly! You said. The vomit did not stop at my face. It dripped down my shirt, and into my bra. I took out my nursing pads, which were soaked, and laid them on the table of the trendy Durham restaurant. Our waiter passed them by without comment, but he did offer to refill our Crème Fraiche.
I looked over at Sean. "To me that seemed horrible." I said. "Did it look as bad to you as it felt to me?" (You know how these things are, sometimes they seem dramatic to us, but they don't actually look like a big deal.)
"Do you remember Nickelodeon Slime?" Sean answered in return. I hung my head in shame.
The hipsters around us were young and childless. They went about their lives, sipping their hot toddies and avoiding eye contact, but I know they saw it happen. Can you imagine what they must have thought of us? "The most wretched couple was in the restaurant tonight" they probably told their girlfriends, or cats, or tattoo artists that evening. "This poor woman got slimed directly in her face."
|This is what the hipsters saw.|
So, my darling son, tonight you carried the day, but at the rate I'm going I think I'm actually going to emerge the victor of our ongoing battle of embarrassment. Afterall, you're going to grow into a sensitive, intelligent, and socially attune young man, and I'm only going to give less of a damn about what people think as I get older. When you're a teenager and you ask me why I'm embarrassing you, I'll be sure to remind you that it's because you puked in my face. My gut tells me you'll probably just roll your eyes and say, "Mom, please go put on some pants."