Night vomit is the worst.
I wish I had something more profound to say, but I am not of a profound mind. So, following Hemingway, I wrote the first true thing.
Swirl paced our bedroom for hours last night. He’d lay down, curl up, stretch out, roll on his back, get up, kick Punchy out of his bed, drink vast quantities of water, lick his lips 10,000 times, and then throw up, a great gushing blast of the water he’d just drunk.
There was nothing to do but to watch and wait and mop up. Wonder what was the offending food or object. And not take extreme measures like loading him into the truck to go the the ER in the middle of the night where the fluorescent light exaggerates every panic into hysteria and a simple inquiry spurs mountains of tests and x-rays and medicines to be picked up at the only 24-hour pharmacy on the other side of town. Of course, we would’ve endured all that if he got worse, not entirely knowing what getting worse would look like.
Finally, Swirl exhausted himself, and too tired to vomit again, he went to sleep. I watched him sleep like I used to watch my sick children to make sure they were still breathing. I’ve done a lot of that, at least enough to know that watching someone’s breathing is oddly hypnotic. Eventually, your own breathing syncs with the object of your observation, until you are both breathing and then, happily, sleeping.
In the morning, the dog looked normal but I was hungover from all of his vomiting and breathing, so much so, it was the first thing I thought to write about tonight despite a day which had plenty of fine moments.