(A short dispatch from our family vacation a few weeks ago…everyone is well now.)
For now, he sleeps. His thin, lanky body tucked under the covers. His shaggy hair matted against the pillow. Three days of endless fun came crashing down with a stomach ache that arrived slowly at first and then swooped in ferociously.
He rested against me in the hotel bed, moaning and twisting his body periodically as he watched TV. He finally gave in and his stomach turned inside out.
And now, he sleeps. As the lights in the garden courtyard begin to twinkle. As the gentle hum of conversation and the clink of silverware against dishes wafts up to our room. He sleeps.
A vacation with children hasn’t really begun until someone gets sick. Three days splashing and paddling at the hotel waterpark no doubt did us in this time.
I remember my two or three birthday trips to Wet-n-Wild when I was a kid. I don’t think one went by without me coming down with some excruciating ailment almost immediately after.
It was still fun, though. Our trip has been fun, too. Fun times spent with cousins the kids don’t see so often anymore and loving and generous grandparents. Swimming and watching fountains and scouting waterfalls and chasing each other around a large log made out of hard foam.
And I have no doubt we’ll be back at it soon. Back to the water and the donuts and the French fries and everything that’s so magical about vacations. Particularly when you’re a kid.
But for now, he sleeps. With me beside him. Because sometimes that’s all there is to do.