Generation Cedar

I try not to whine but…
What’s worse than the “throw-up virus” in a large family?

The throw-up flu, I suppose–especially when three little ones have it at the same time!

This is our morning–after virtually neither of us slept because we had these two in our rooms suffering from coughs, fevers, etc. Kyla was up all night, and then, right about the time they got settled (it was daylight by then) and we drifted off into what felt like our first bit of real sleep,
Avi made it to our room before she threw up–and woke the two littles 😉

OK, so maybe I don’t try too hard not to whine.

“Here ya go, Kelly, a chance to live out that ‘giving all of yourself” you’ve been bloggin’ about.”

Careful what you say.

I am thankful for opportunities to die to my flesh, just not at the moment they arrive 😉

We thought it was the stomach bug, but after the first sickie came down with fever, bad cough and feeling miserable for more than a day, we decided it’s probably the flu.

For the record, we just had the stomach virus less than a month ago. If I had blogged about that, you would have found out that my seven-year-old, who gets terrified when she gets sick, didn’t throw up in the boat-sized container I strategically placed by her bed…oh no, she threw up right on top of her sister’s head who sleeps below her in the trundle. Great 2-in-the morning fun!

For a family our size, the stomach bug means quarantine for like a year. It’s at least a month-long cabin-fever sentence. It’s really hard to describe unless you’ve attended 2 or 3 at a time, all throwing up, some crying, some running around spraying Lysol and opening windows–and you know that it will strike again, and again, and again, until it’s run the whole gamut of people who live here.

One time, Aaron, I AND Bria, the oldest, were deathly sick with some awful virus at the same time–literally unable to move. I remember just lying there praying, “Lord keep them safe”, while the 6-year old in charge at the time handed out rounds of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.

If I ever DID choose a bad reason for having large families, this would be it.

Today has consisted of little more than holding babies–sometimes two at a time, trying desperately to distract them, praying, and wishing I could take their place. It’s an ironic combination of motherly bliss and exhaustion.

I write this blog in my pajamas…the ones I was wearing when I got up this morning.

I asked Avi if I could hold her…she said in the weakest voice, “No, I don’t want you to get sick”.

This is as much misery for a mother as the ones who are sick, I think. But I am ALWAYS brought to gratitude when we get sick…that it is temporary. And my heart aches for those who are struggling with chronic or terminal illness with no end in sight.

This, too, shall pass.

P.S. My darling husband handed me some money tonight after supper and said, “You and Bria run into town for dessert–y’all need a break.” He is the true servant in our family.

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36 Responses

  1. God Blessed you with Great man,show him much admiration,Men love that.
    I pray that your kids overcome this round of flue ,may God touch them and bring recovery to there tender bodies..
    I have two little girls two, I know the pain pressure of sickness.

    God’s Blessing

  2. royalblood,

    Welcome to the blog and thanks so much for your kind words!

    Deanna–yep…that’s where we are! Oh, and elderberry for the well ones!

  3. Oh goodness, February just seems to be the month of illness. My roommates and I have been sick off and on since January; just like you said it has to run the gamut of everyone.

    I’ll say a little prayer for your family; hope you all feel better soon!

    -Miss H.

  4. Ohh, so sorry ya’ll are ill. I know the feeling of just holding your breath waiting for the next round of pukies. Before having children, I used my disgust of other people’s throw-up as one of my excuses for delaying children. But I guess I got over it. I’ve learned to recognize the sound of it coming and either jump out of is path or rush the sick one to a “safe” place to let it land. I think now teh worst part is when I am sick and cannot care for them.

  5. A large family in the throes of vomiting really can be a time of dark discouragement, can’t it? In times like those my mind always dwells on morbid things like living during the European plagues without running water and hot baths!

    Although these rounds of flu do seem to occur more often in families with several younger children, I did find that if I really watched the sugar intake in the winter, had my children drink red raspberry tea every single day (at least a cup to boost immunity) and really really washed the hands after every outing, grocery shopping etc. sometimes I could stop the cycle.

    Praying for you

  6. I really want to make you jealous and tell you that in 11 years only 1 of my kids has thrown up 3 times (all due to over indulgence), but I won’t because if I do they’ll all end up getting sick 🙂

  7. Shalom dear Kelly. I commiserate with you. Sleep deprivation, watching your little ones suffer and waiting for the axe to fall yourself is a very unpleasant combination.

    I pray that all of this unpleasantness will pass by very quickly and you will all be hale and hearty.

  8. I am touched by little Avi who when she felt the worst automatically thought of putting others first. wow. How old is she?

    How do you do it? I am constantly reminding my small ones to love each other by putting others first but often it seems like we’re making little or very slow progress.

    I hope and pray that you all get well remarkable soon without passing the illness around and around.

  9. Oh yes. The dreaded tummy bug. We’ve all had it twice this winter. My family isn’t as large as yours, but 4 kids throwing up…………….well, not fun.

    We’ve all but 2 got nasty colds right now.

    My oldest has pancreatitus. She’s been hospitalized for 2 weeks. Hopefully she’ll get to come home today. Then we’ll all be miserable together. It helps the time pass when your together. 🙂

  10. UGH! I totally understand! I keep a group of toddlers and the last two weeks, they all got it, one by one til there was only me left. I remember thinking PHEW, thank goodness I missed that one….and then it smacked my right between the eyes last Sunday about 6am. m.i.s.e.r.y. Thankfully we are all done with it and the house *appears* to have gotten rid of this particularly nasty bug. Prayers and hugs your way. xo

  11. We are right there with you. I wish I could take the place of all four of my sick children. It’s so sad to watch them, but like you I am so grateful that this too shall pass. And Nana is coming to help today!

  12. I sooooo know where you are! I remember one time when all seven (my youngest wasn’t here yet) were vomitting at the same time. three slept on the reclining couch, two on the loveseat, one in my rocker and one on the floor. I spent the night moving the bowl from one child to the next. Horribly misrable and yet in a way so satisfying to be able to serve so completly.

    Hope you are all better soon.

  13. I really appreciate all the well-wishes! Moms in the trenches together–it’s a beautiful thing 🙂

    Last night was the baby’s turn to start vomiting (she had only had fever, cough, misery until now)…starting about 2:30 am, steady every 30 minutes and continuing. Looks like another PJ day.

    Does anyone know of a home remedy that settles the stomach? I read about ginger; of course I don’t have any and it feels like an act of congress to try to go out for things like this during sickness.

    My neighbor gave me Emetrol which doesn’t seem to be helping.

    I’ll let you know how the elderberry wards off sickness for the rest of us–just started on it last night.

    BTW, does it matter what kind of red rasberry tea you use? Does it have similar “warding-off” properties as the elderberry?

    Quinn–I want to know your “secret”, as I’m sure does everyone else!!!

    Sheena, that comment was a little out of character for Avi which is why it touched me too! We are always working on the “others first” principle.

  14. I know when queasy, just cutting open a lemon and smelling it helps relieve the nausea. I also like ginger, but don’t like to prepare it, so I found lemon ginger tea in the health food section of the grocery store.

  15. Good Morning Kelly,

    I am so sorry that you all are sick! We had a nasty flu like bug in January, and it seemed to take a month before we all finally got over it and “felt normal”!

    Both of my children suffer from severe asthma, so any cold/flu bug can be dangerous. When they were little and were up gasping for air in the night, I would feel so helpless. I would cry out to the LORD to let them regain their breath. One night, my son was extremely bad from a cold. He was around 7. His asthma just wasn’t responding to the nebulizer treatments. I just prayed and rocked him. It was the weekend, and I thought how could I get a hold of the asthma doctor early? What would be a good time LORD? Help me….
    As Ben finally fell asleep, I decided to call the next morning at 8:30 as I had decided. His little lips were regaining color and his breathing was not as labored. Ben was still sleeping as I walked to the phone to call at 8:30. The phone rang before I could begin dialing. IT WAS OUR ASTHMA DOCTOR! She said that she just felt the need to call…was everything ok? Our LORD takes good care of us, doesn’t HE?
    PS She wasn’t a Christian, but an extremely caring doctor.

    Rest, drink plenty of fluids and spray that Lysol!
    We’ll be praying here in VA for you, Kelly!

  16. The use of elderberry puts your kids at risk of cyanide poisoning. It is not recommended for pregnant or lactating women. I think you are safe with the red raspberry, however.

  17. Anon–if we were eating a bucket full of seeds, maybe…the same goes for apples, apricots and many other fruits whose seeds contain cyanide (healthy in small amounts, lethal in large doses.)

    However, we are just drinking the juice…what are the sources of dangers for pregnant women, that I’m curious about…

    “There are no recognized adverse effects, although data is limited. It is suggested that a diuretic effect may result in hypokalemia, but this has not been objectively reported or studied.


    The stems, roots, unripe berries, and seeds may contain cyanide, and could cause vomiting and severe diarrhea if chewed or eaten uncooked. Ripe berries are safe when prepared for use in foods.”

  18. Kelly,
    I am sorry that your family is down with the sickness!! However, I really did enjoy your blog and I confess I laughed! Not at you but the story of your one little girl getting sick on the other at 2 in the morning. That is truly awful, I can’t imagine how your sweetly sleeping other darling must have felt!! I think I’m also reminded of all the times my mom and dad would try to help me aim at the target of the “boat sized” containers. I was the child who would go running down the hall getting sick all the way. I’m thankful my little darling, so far, did not inherit the plague of the bad aim. May God give you strength in this time of sickness….

    God bless….

    PS thanks for the keeping it “real” this blog really does encourage me to desire a large family of my own, even with all the realities of illness that comes and goes.

  19. First, you are blessed (as am I) to have a wonderful leader of your family. Second, Prayed for a speedy recovery for all. And third, beg someone to go to the store and get fresh ginger root. It is sooooo very worth it. Just a tiny chunk, swallowed whole does wonders as it is anti-viral, bacterial and other stuff. When my daughter was little and would not swallow it whole, we got Hansens Ginger Ale; It is naturally flavored, and we put it in the bottom of her glass after crushing it. The oils come out and help. Also, we give it to my daughter before long car rides to prevent motion sickness. God’s remedies always work the best—without the dreaded side effects of fake medicine.

  20. Kelly,
    For upset tummy you
    might try coca cola syrup.
    Use to get it at the pharmacy over the counter.
    Not sure if it’s still marketed or not.
    Worth a phone call,

  21. Oh, Kelly! Your poor family!!
    I hope you are all better soon. A family that I know got what sounds like the same sort of stomach virus-flu in their house on New Year’s Eve of all things. The husband and ALL 11 CHILDREN got it! Thankfully, the mother managed to escape it–but each person who came down with the virus was throwing up for 48-72 hours. Oh, it was awful. I remember thinking, that mother is on her way to sainthood if she can sanctify this situation!

    I confess, I’m about as deathly afraid of vomitting as your seven-year-old. (One of the reasons why being open to life–and therefore morning sickness–is no easy thing for me!) So naturally, this is my biggest fear as our family gets larger. You’ve given me perspective, though: Especially when you’re homeschooling and your kids aren’t bringing home a new disease every week from school of daycare, these things don’t happen ALL the time. It’s a season, and one that God can use to grow us in remarkable (though unpleasant) ways. Thank you for your grace in the midst of a simply wretched situation.


  22. Oh, and you mentioned you don’t have ginger: do you have dried ground ginger, though, for baking? You can make a mild tea (chammomile or even regular black tea) and add a few shakes of the ground ginger and a squeeze of lemon. As long as nobody has an aversion to the taste of lemon and ginger, this can be very soothing.

  23. “A tea of horsemint relieves nausea and vomiting”

    From a book I have on edible and medicinal plants. Another name is beebalm. You may be able to get some at a health food store, or possibly wild. (maybe not today, but would be good to have on hand in the future!)

    It also lists:

    wild mint and

    I am sorry to here about your family’s sickness. I have been there (last week!)
    Take Care, we are praying for you!

  24. Hello Kelly:

    small sips of warm chamomille or peppermint tea – no sugar – perhaps a little raw honey – is nice and soothing. I’m sorry you all are sick. I will be praying for you. Thank you for your other posts too – I have been so encouraged!

    P.S. colloidal silver has helped us avoid the flu and other sicknesses this winter.

  25. Kelly,

    For the red raspberry tea try to find a place you can buy it in bulk. It’s just dried red raspberry leaves…nothing fancy. Don’t buy it in little tea pouches! It is wonderful for pregnant and lactating moms btw…drink it all day long (mix it with juice or lemons to give it some decent flavor…it does NOT taste like raspberries :(!

    For the continued vomiting…this is a little “yucky” but we are all moms and dads here-right? Sometimes an enema of warm water helps the child rehydrate and it stops the vomiting. Believe it or not, an enema made with a little real coffee also is great for fevers. It detoxifies the little people and brings the fever down. We’ve used it once for a very sick 5 year old and he immediately cooled off and went to sleep. My parents and the docs of their generation used enemas a lot for illness. It is a good way to get fluids straight into the body without bothering the tummmy.

    There ya go! More than you ever wanted to know-I’m sure!

    (mom to 8 who rarely uses the doctor and they are healthy kids!)

  26. Wow–these have been great health titps. Wish I had time to start a “home remedy” forum 😉

    Things have quieted today, thankully. The sick ones are really still and mostly content, much differen than yesterday 😉

    I hold the baby against my chest right now and she’s asleep.

    Thanks for all the tips/encouragement. It’s really cool to have such a huge support group of people all over the place–isn’t the Internet fun?

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