perfectly packed diaper bag is a myth


Several moons ago I had an experience of being caught completely unprepared in public, as my son decided to upchuck his lunch, covering the two of us and the floor of a department store. A passerby disdainfully asked  if I had a tissue with which to sop up a pint-size amount of milky splurge. A single tissue would have been no match, but worse yet, I had nothing.

I chalked the experience up to my first-time-mom naivety and prepped the backpack properly that evening for future messes. Of course it never stayed that way. As usual we’d forget something, or anticipate a shorter trip. Somehow we always managed without any real hiccups. That’s how it goes until it doesn’t.

Until the day baby has food poisoning, or a sudden virus, or who knows what, and who cares, because the only thing that matters is trying to clean the vomit off his clothes before the winter chill sets in.  Trying not to panic when he won’t, or can’t, stop spewing all over his stroller. Wondering why the hell did manufacturers make the buckles so tough to open. Gently calming him, despite the internal frenzy. “It’s okay. Everything is fine.” Then the odor hits.

Does being a good parent mean you can’t puke in front of your kid, or with him?

 I wonder if parents are ever really prepared for the surprises thrown at them by their children? I doubt it. There is no one perfect way to pack a bag that can prepare us for life. It can help to pack a carrier and a bag of baby wipes though, just in case.

{I started this post almost a week ago, after living through one of my worst nights as a mother. Five hours of cradling a defenseless child who couldn’t keep anything down. As soon as we started seeking out our local urgent care, it was over. Or so we thought. Two days later Jonathan and I were knocked down with the same symptoms. Why does a loving family have to share everything?

Thank goodness we had an awesome friend who came to the rescue and took Rivers on a playdate for a couple of hours while we recovered.

Anyway, we’re all healthy now and the apartment has been scrubbed from top to bottom. But that’s where we’ve been these last weeks, surviving.}


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