The snot-vomit happened at 3am and he almost choked. Kev had already gotten up to work and Tom was sleeping next to me when all this stuff came out of him. Small bodies can hold incredible amounts of stuff. It was dark and I had to make an executive decision….with one hand I slammed him on the back and with the other hand I caught as much of the snot-vomit as I could. These are the type of executive decisions parents face everyday. It’s like a war zone. Tom never really woke up through all of this, they don’t take these things personally like us adults do (Idele’s wise words), and he promptly went back to sleep against my shoulder. With one sticky hand hanging off the bed and who-knows-what-colour snot-vomit slowly sliding through my fingers and dripping onto the floor, I lay as still as I could so as not to wake him. “Kev, Keeeeevvv, baaaabbe” I whispered as loud as I could. Kev babe did not come to my rescue.
It takes about 7 minutes for snot-vomit to dry. I use the word dry very loosely as it was more of a sticky kind of dry, but at least not slurpy wet anymore. Once ‘dried’ I used both hands to pile a wall of pillows around the snot-vomit baby and tip-toed to the bathroom to wash my utterly disgusting hand. I’m surprised I did not mock charge as snot is my kryptonite. I wont blame you either if you are mock charging as you read this.
Fast forward through lots of screaming and said baby being stepped on by siblings and run over by barking dogs, we finally arrive at school (the older two and I). None of us brushed our hair and I don’t think my kids have brushed their teeth in a week (judge away, you’ll see what its like when you have three kids and a partner who works harder than the chinese, all of them combined). The teachers glare at me as I drag them into school by their backpacks, which they have to wear because they’re a whole frikkin 4 years old and it’s clearly time to learn to be responsible. They’re crying because the bags are heavy and I’m crying inside as I’m late for work.
Traffic (or rather Durban traffic, which is totally so not a traffic thing, but still one pedestrian feels like traffic when you’re late).
Get to work and once again piss off the security dude who really wants you to fill up the parking spots in an efficient and sequential manner. So when you pull into the nearest spot and not the ‘next available’ one, you are just being irritating and obstinate. Because he was standing right there, waving at you and showing you in no unclear terms where to park. Exactly where. But your reality is that your training is starting and you’re presenting so 10 steps vs 15…you rebel you. But now there are gaps in between parking spots. And gaps, you know. I get it, kind of. You have to take your job serious and take pride in it and all that. All these small things.
And then you arrive at work and you see a message about a young guy passing away the previous night, a guy who worked there, a guy who was loved by many. And you actually just want to be back at snot-vomit, shaking your hand and pulling a face and whispering to your husband.
I’m not saying that you have to make absolutely every single moment count. That would be impossible and also exhausting. But I want you to say ‘snot-vomit’ out loud when you find yourself inside a moment that might be pissing you off right now, but one that is also a moment you will miss one day.
When I picked the kids up from school we stopped for an impromptu ice cream adventure that took all of 10 minutes. Swirly twirly ice cream with a flake from the garage shop. We ate it in the car and made a mess. We got some on each other’s faces. We took a photo for dad who is the best man and who we miss so much when he works so hard. And the world felt kind of better, sweeter. In only 10 minutes.
Snot vomit. Snot vomit every day.