Monday, December 06, 2010

The Seventh Circle of Hell

Thanks Sinead, for that title, until you said that I didn't know what to call the last few days of my life. I've been a bad drunk writer the last week - no drinking, no writing, very little internet access. For some reason when I go to my folk's place over Thansgiving, I drop off the face of the earth, which is great in some respects and then terrible in others. But always, without fail, getting back to my regular life involves an epic struggle. This year so far has been the worst.

My son was sick in the night two nights before we left, a stomach bug that had him up every two hours to throw up in the bowl he slept with. I, of course, didn't sleep. The next night Lucy woke up WANTING to throw up because Mick had been doing it. She's a copy cat, as my son said all night, which was so helpful at four am.

I had a fabulous booksigning at Cypress House in Rochelle, Il. A gorgeous coffee shop/flower shop/gift shop. And then I packed up the kids and hit the road. I was tired, but a gigantic Panera coffee fixed that. The kid's fell asleep, I had NPR on the radio - it looked good. Until Lucy threw up all over herself. I cleaned her up as best I could and she fell right back to sleep. The car reeked of vomit. But, with that huge coffee in my system and the kids asleep, I thought I'd press on a little more. Lucy woke up a half hour later and put the kibosh on that idea.

So, hotel room. Mick, the trooper, passes right out and stays out. Lucy however, paces the room pushing aside every ice bucket and hotel towel I put under her nose, only to vomit four times all over herself. She finally passes out at 4:30. Mick is up at 6:30. The hotel coffee is terrible. Lucy throws a fit for forty five minutes about wearing Mick's pajamas - she simply doesn't understand she's thrown up over everything I had for her. I cried at this point. Just a little.

White out snow storm. Traffic jam twenty minutes from home. Backyardigan's on repeat on the DVD player - I will never hear that opening song again without wanting to cry and/or scream at my kids.

Now, what you may think, could possibly keep a woman like myself from losing her mind and I'll tell you. While home, I had a long conversation with my editor about some changes that needed to be made to my book. Big changes. Lots of thinking. And while my life was literally covered in vomit - I had my secret world to escape to. Once again, I say with great appreciation - Thank God I'm a Writer.


Stephanie Doyle said...

Jesus... I cried when reading this. I swear to God I don't know how Moms do it. Every day, day in and day out.

You guys need more than one day a year in celebration. You need MONUMENETS built to daily.

Hope the kids are feeling better!!

Maureen McGowan said...

I can't imagine what you've been through the past few days Molly but so glad you guys made it home safely. Seeing the news, and knowing you'd have to drive through all that lake effect snow on the other side of the lake... and that your kids were sick...
If thinking about your book helped, rather than added, to the stress, I am so glad. :)

Eileen said...

Oh, Molly, what a nightmare! On the flip side, it will make a good story that you'll tell when the kids are older. We still talk about the time that I went racing through a Mexican restaurant in Scottsdale, clutching Teddy in front of me while making an impromptu bowl out of my skirt for him him to vomit in and he's in college now!

Simone St. James said...

Holy crap Molly! I want a cup of tea and a nap just reading that!

Sinead M said...

I cannot imagine a more stressful time... and by yourself.

I would have cracked, so well done that you made it home in one piece.

Molly O'Keefe said...

Steph - as long as the monument isn't made out of puke - I'll take it.

Maureen - the snow was ridiculous and today all of London is shut down!

Eileen - it's true that almost as soon as it happened I was thinking about how I could torture my daughter with this story when she's older. I should have taken a picture!

Sinead - i won't lie - the by yourself part of it was the craziest thing. If I could have figured out a way to get adam telebeamed to me, I would have.

Patrice said...

If you view writing as "the great escape" into a better world, you are TRULY blessed. You are a writer for sure.

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