Splash. Wretch. Splatter. Those were the sounds I heard coming from the hallway right before midnight.
Maybe it's the dog?
It wasn't. It was my 13 year old vomiting a puddle of spaghetti at least a foot in diameter. No lie. Exactly two weeks earlier it had been my 11 year old...except she made it the four extra steps to the restroom.
What glory and honor is there, kneeling on the hard wooden floor, using an entire load of freshly washed towels and a bottle of vinegar, to mop up regurgitated spaghetti? Alone. I didn't sign up for this.
I signed up for the 'till death do us part' part. 'In sickness and in health.' I never agreed to have and raise four kids on my own. I'm not even a single parent...I'm just parenting alone.
The vomit splatter reaches beyond the foot wide puddle. It goes past the living room door, up along the walls...pretty sure vomit juice made it down into the floor heater. I pile the towels one by one, in an attempt to not make any bodily contact what so ever with the foulness. The entire load goes right back into the washer. While I'm wiping the baseboards, might as well hit the doors and door frames since I'm down there anyway. Right?
I meant the vows I made. They don't lose meaning just because half of the 'us' that made them decides they do. This half-my half-meant them and that hasn't changed. They are still valuable. I make them valuable because I still honor them. I hold them as honorable. I maintain the integrity of marriage and my commitment to it every day.
It wasn't for nothing then and it's not for nothing now. If no one else stands for marriage or my marriage, I still do. If no one else is going to clean up the vomit, I will. Alone if I have to. I'm here. I'm wiping the tears. I'm handling the hard questions and the emotions that come with it. I'm raising children to love and forgive. I'm invested. I made a commitment and even if I am the only one sticking to it--I continue to do so.
Dear wounded momma, sister, and wife,
It's worth it. It's valuable. Even when you're the only one kneeling on that hard wood floor, sopping up sour garlic scented chunks of something, it counts. You matter and He sees you.
Someone Who Really Understands.