wings and things

What a strange Christmas!

on December 28, 2014

On Christmas Eve, I sliced the ham and put it into a sealed container in the refrigerator, ready for Ming to bring to my mother’s place in the evening, then I went to the nursing home. Ming was working at the restaurant and planned to come home, shower and change and head to my mother’s while I spent the afternoon with Anthony.

Just after I got to my mother’s at around 6pm, Ming rang and said he was sick and had been vomiting and didn’t think he could come.

“But what about the ham?” I shrilled unsympathetically.
“Mum, I am really sick!” Ming exclaimed weakly.
“Can you just bring it and then you can go to bed at Grandma’s,” I said.
He agreed begrudgingly.

Meanwhile, family members began arriving at my mother’s, champagne was poured and the presents under her Christmas tree were ogled. I kept an anxious eye out for Ming and finally he arrived. As he walked up the driveway, I wondered why he had left his car in the road and why he was wearing such a strange spotty outfit. Then I realised, oh no! that he was covered in vomit.

“I just threw up in my car!” he said weakly, but ferociously. So we got his car into the driveway, he went inside via the back door so he didn’t have to see anyone, and my mother gave him some clothes to change into and put him to bed. I took the container of ham inside then got a bucket of water and tried to clean the inside of Ming’s car but it was everywhere (I will spare you the details!)

Anyway, with Ming in a bedroom adjacent to the loo, the rest of us continued our festivities while I checked on Ming periodically, who was continuing to vomit every hour or so. I felt terrible to have made him come and had to suffer his weak remonstrances of “You care more about the ham than me.”

By the time I was ready to go home, at around 9.30pm, it had been decided that Ming would sleep the night at Grandma’s.

The next morning (Christmas day) at 6am, there was a knock on the front door that woke me up and, assuming it was a recovered Ming who had lost his key, I opened it blearily only to find it was my brother! He said, “I thought you might like some company – let’s have a drink.” So BJ and I drank champagne on the front veranda, waxing lyrical about this and that and watching the birds dive in and out of the trees, including the new wild parrots I’ve never seen before. It was a fantastic hour and it actually made my day! Then BJ had to head home for his family’s 8am Christmas present ritual.

After he left, my mother contacted me to say she would bring Ming home because he was too weak to drive and had continued vomiting until 4am. So they arrived and we opened a few presents but Ming was still feeling ghastly so I put him to bed and my mother headed in to town to my brother’s place after which she was to meet me at the nursing home.

Well, the crayfish, mango, and my mother’s pavlova, were all a great success with Anthony and so were all the presents I helped him unwrap, then we watched a bit of tenor music on TV, then my mother left, then I went to do my 3-6pm shift in the dementia wing.

After I knocked off, I went back to Ants’ room and we ate the leftover crayfish (which I’d put in the staff frig.) and I went home to my no-longer-sick-but-very-weak son who struggled through the opening of his remaining Christmas presents ha!

But yesterday my mother contacted me to say she had the same thing – the gastro. and it was absolutely horrific and I was helpless to help because of contagion. I rang the nursing home to tell them the situation but that I, myself, was not affected (there is a strict rule that you don’t come in if there is any likelihood of infection of any sort). So, despite the fact that I’m not sick, I’ve been banned from coming into the nursing home until next Thursday! This means I can’t do my allotted shifts and can’t see Ants.

Thankfully, my mother is over the worst but is obviously very weak. Today Ming and I are going to hers to pick up his vomit-ridden car but, now that he has recovered, he wants to take me out for lunch first.

What a strange Christmas!

34 responses to “What a strange Christmas!

  1. A Christmas to try to forget!

  2. Oh no what a terrible thing to be sick at Christmas time, you had no way of knowing that Ming was that sick but still you did get your ham…………..and you cleaned up the car and didn’t make him do it when he was feeling better

  3. Vicki says:

    Oh my goodness, what a difficult (but also nice) Christmas.

    So glad to hear Ming and your Mother are both OK. I might have been tempted to take Ming to the Hospital in case it was food poisoning, but as a nurse and Mother, you were well equipped to deal with the severe gastro.

    Such a ghastly thing for your elderly Mother to have too.

    I suggest Ming ‘lash out’ and pay (or perhaps you might contribute) for a complete professional clean at the nearest Car Wash. Despite your own cleaning and leaving the windows down for a few days to air the interior, there’s sure to be minute specks of virus ridden vomit remaining and the smell will be detectable anyway.

    Hopefully the New Year will appear with better luck.

  4. The poor things, Ming and your Mother! This is definitely a Christmas not to repeat for the both of them, but I am glad that you and Anthony had a lovely one together and you and your brother had a nice alone time as siblings need to do every now and again. I hope that your Mother bounces back from the gastro, I am sure that Ming is right as rain, he is young and strong as bull. Your mother may need a week of rest to be on the safe side. Hugs Jules. 😀

  5. We both had eventful Christmases it seems but yours’ was more complex than mine…Hope you don’t get sick… Diane

  6. Tiny says:

    Oh, such is life, full of surprises – and all we can do is to take it with a pinch of salt, sorry, champagne. I wish you & yours a much more upbeat New Year celebration.

  7. Yup — definitely a champagne inducing state of affairs! So glad Ming is feeling better and your mom is on the mend. I love how you hold space for what happened to be what it was and stay unattached to guilt. Great example in loving acceptance Julie.

    Happy New Year!

  8. Julie Lane says:

    Sent from my iPad

  9. Julie Lane says:

    Oh nooo. I call it the Christmas bug , and it hits every year. Good news is, I think you build up resistance , and it only can get you every 5 years or so. Bloody awful.

    Sent from my iPad

  10. Yvonne says:

    I hope you don’t catch the dreaded lurgy! That car will need a bit of applied attention, for sure.

  11. Poor Ming and your mum! Egads! I don’t envy you cleaning out that car. Sounds like the rest of Christmas turned out alright, right? May 2015 be your best year ever!
    Diana xo

  12. Judy says:

    My “gut feeling” tells me this was not a great holiday to “stomach.” I’ll bet you wanted to just “throw up” your arms and yell, “This is retched!” Sorry for all the puns that I hope are giving you a smile. Hope you continue to avoid this bug and get lots of rest while quarantined! Glad Ming is better. Sorry about your mom, too.

  13. niasunset says:

    Oh dear Julie, what a day you had. I am sorry for them both, Mind and your mum! And the car cleaning!!!! I wish you The New Year be more beautiful than now… Thanks and Love, nia

  14. susanpoozan says:

    That’s a dreadful virus to get, I am so sorry that it rather spoiled your Christmas. It usually attacks at Christmas here too, my sister and I had it one year.

    Hope everyone is feeling better now and that 2015 won’t be marred by such incidents.

  15. janeslog says:

    Ming must have felt awful – sounds like Norovirus which is also known as the winter vomiting bug in the UK. I have never had it but those who have say it is terrible. It’s a wonder Ming was able to drive as he must have felt awful.

    You are best to say away from the nursing home until everyone is better and you have not developed it yourself. It is hard to avoid it, as washing hands can only go so far – it is airborne and can also be caught by breathing in the virus after someone has been sick.

    When we had the outbreak in the UK a few years ago the cleaning routine in the work was stepped up with toilets being taken out of action if someone took ill and the cleaners were continually wiping down the handrails, door handles and other surfaces with antibacterial liquid. There were signs up everywhere about how to avoid catching it explaining all about it.

    It’s not a fun illness, but fortunately only lasts a few days.

    At least you have nice warm sunny weather in Perth. I checked the weather and it is 24 degrees C which will rise to 31 degrees C at midday. In Glasgow it is only 1 degree C at 13.15 and will fall to -3 degrees C tonight. However it is sunny but frosty.

  16. Poor Ming and Meg and Ants!!!!! (Not excluding you Julie. Bu they seem to have gotten the worse end of the deal!) I hope all are feeling better and stronger now. There is vicious sickness running the gamut here as well. 😦 I hope you do not catch any of it!!!

  17. susielindau says:

    Certainly not a Christmas for germaphobes! How about a Happy New Year instead!

  18. Not fun to have an intestinal flu. Hope you all stay healthy and welcome in the New Year with laughter.

  19. A strange Christmas for sure! Poor Ming – he tried so hard to please you, didn’t he? But, Julie, I love the way you write about it…you have a gift. ❤

  20. Terry says:

    A terrible time to be sick, over the holiday. Hope everyone is feeling better by now

  21. tootlepedal says:

    We had a mild go a month ago and can empathise with the sufferers. I hope that you escape.

  22. ksbeth says:

    wow, how quickly things turn, but it sounds like you just did the best you could and found your way through it. hope everyone is on the mend very soon )

  23. Not so “likey” …. so sorry to hear the sicky part, but glad to hear you were able to spend time with Ants! We passed a cold around over Christmas …. joy. Be well, Julie!

  24. Wow, doesn’t sound like much fun–the sicky part. Hope all fell well soon and the healthy folks avoid the plague!

  25. Have a great New Year!

  26. Oh my goodness, Julie! That’s a Christmas you won’t forget in a hurry Happy New Year to you, Ming and Ant. xx

  27. Judith Post says:

    Poor Ming! What a horrible time to get sick. And your poor mom. Flu’s going around in our area, but I’m keeping my fingers crossed. I don’t want it. Hope you stay healthy. And glad you have such a wonderful family, who made your Christmas good, regardless.

  28. Poor Ming and your mom. Hope all is well now and that 2015 is full of blessings.

  29. Goodness! Not at all what I was expecting to read.. hope all feeling well again now.

  30. Rhonda says:

    Oh Jules….YUCK! Poor things…let’s hope you’ve seen the end of that! The unexpected visit seems perfectly timed, glad to hear it made a difference in your day. Happy New Year my friend…xoxo

  31. poor chris got this bug the day we took my sister to the airport. i am used to being sick but seeing him sick hurts me. i can only imagine your frustration with not only sick ming and mom along with being banned from the home.

    people always say i have a strange arrangement with going to charleston and sharing that time with the first wife. it works for us so strange is the norm here:)

    sorry about ming and your mom, hoping you don’t catch the same thing!

    happy new year my friend, sending love and hugs

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