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Portrait of Pascaline “Eux de Toilet” (Making the BEST of it w/ your Camera!)

Me Ra Koh

Our life has been made up of vomit and diarrhea the last seven days.  Yep, there is no nice way to put it but just say it as it is.  If this had lasted for one to three days, I don’t think I’d use a whole blog post to share.  BUT as of last night at 3am, it’s been seven days friends.  Count them out, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, AND 7.  Do I want to scream?  YES!  Do Brian and I feel like we are up to our elbows in cleaning, cleaning, cleaning? YES!

It started on our flight back to Thailand from Cambodia.  Blaze felt a little nauseous.  We boarded the plane.  Buckled up, etc. etc.  And then all of a sudden the little guy started vomiting in his seat.  The airline stewardess brought me Kleenex!  Um yeah, not super helpful.  I don’t tell me Asians use Kleenex to clean up vomit b/c that is ridiculous.  I simply think this airline stewardess wasn’t the sharpest knife in the drawer.  A nearby, sympathetic passenger passed me baby wipes—an angel in disguise.  And get this, as I’m on my hands and knees trying to clean up, the plane starts to taxi and just takes off!  So much for waiting for everyone to be seated.

Same thing happened at the airport and then at our house.  Next day Blaze laid low, and the storm seemed to pass.  Mom’s up to bat.  Oh yeah friends.  I vomited so much in one night the blood vessels popped on my eyeball so it looks like I’ve been in a bar fight.  “Should look better in three weeks,” says the doctor.  Great.  I laid low the next day and felt okay after.  Well let’s see, let’s bring Pascaline up to bat.  She hasn’t had a turn.  And Pascaline not only knocks it out of the park one day, but two and three days, and I think today makes it four….um yeah.  She has taken the championship by managing to throw up in every room, on our clothes, and at 3:30am this morning (when you thought it couldn’t get ANY better), she got up and vomited all over the home school stuff.  That’s feeling a little “set up” to me, but never fear, home school will go on to her dismay.  🙂

Blaze, who has been playing in the ocean and chasing monkeys, came down with it again, and then last night I felt nauseated again.  Could it be all the cleaning up we’re doing?  Who knows.   But the doctor was extremely helpful and said that we all have a stomach bacteria.  Take the antibiotics for five days.  That should kill it.  The tricky part is getting Pascaline to keep it down.  And thus, our first week back in Thailand isn’t at all what I pictured.  So I figured it was time to take pictures of what it is.

You see, the climax for me was when…WAIT…this gets gross, so just stop reading if you need too—basically, consider yourself warned.  The climax was when Blaze said he had gas but instead had diarrhea all over the cushions.  As Brian and I start to clean it up, Pascaline decides to contribute by vomiting on Brian.  It was so awesome.  True parenting doesn’t get better than that point.

So you’ve got Pascaline hanging over the toilet, and Blaze showering behind her from his little mess.  And I figure, “What the hell.  It’s time to shoot the sh#$% out of this.”

Portrait of Pascaline Eux de Toilet!

Look at those BIG, SAD, Brown eyes.  We fell for them the first six times she had an episode.  And then the eyes didn’t work any longer.

Less is More!  Don’t even need to see her big brown eyes to feel it.  🙂

I call these next few images “The Waiting” series.

And this last one is almost a little glamorous looking, don’t you think?!

(Photo Recipes: ISO was 200, f-stop was 2.8, and Shutter Speed was 125th of a second.)

Do you think I’m just the MEANEST mom on the island?

Was this the blog post that I thought I’d be writing for today?  No.  But thanks for humoring me because it feels really good to vent.  And regardless of how utterly exhausting and emotional the last seven days have been, shoot me for saying this, but I want to capture it on some level because right here and now, this is a big part of our trip in the last week.

And in case my parents are worried after reading this, here is a little status.  Blaze went kayaking with Brian today and feels great.  Pascaline has made it almost 20 hours without vomiting or running a fever.  In fact, she was sassing Brian a couple hours ago which is always a sign of her normal self coming back.  🙂

For those of you who are wondering about Brian…is he up to bat next?…Good question.


Me Ra


  1. Natalia D says:

    Oh no. How awful. Those sad eyes, poor kids. But your post made me chuckle. I am not laughing at your misfortune, but at how you wrote about it and how you saw some of the humor. Right?
    And I don’t think you are the meanest mum, I’m just relieved someone else picks up a camera when their kids are sick and starts clickin’ away, because I’ve done that before. Here’s hoping you all can end the close relationship with the toilet and continue enjoying your vacation.

  2. Genie says:

    and you? how r u? oh no, you’re not the meanest but truly one of the more twisted….;) On checklist for next time: airline airsick bags. You may want to see Lauren on ur way back! (not kidding)
    what a great ‘slice o’ life’! Love the climax! LOL!! Luv you all – hope it all calms down soon.

  3. Kellie says:

    Sad! Two optimistic thoughts came to mind… 1) At least you know the kids will remember this trip. 2) Good thing you aren’t staying in a developing country that has stick huts and an open pit for a toilet. Nice to have a shiny toilet to lean up against.

    Oh and a 3rd happy thought… good thing you will (hopefully) be there long enough to enjoy your trip once the sickness goes away. If it was a quick trip, you’d be back already!

    Hope it gets better….
    hugs to you!

  4. Rhonda says:

    Sorry, but I laughed at this one. And not a mean mom at all. I would have done the same thing. Or maybe we’re both mean 😉 The photobook for the year has to have the REAL adventures right? I’ll continue to pray for you guys – and that Brian can keep his stomach contents the rest of the trip. No wonder I’ve woken up a couple of nights this week with you guys on my mind.

  5. Emily M. says:

    oh boy! we travel a lot with our kids and the trips are almost always less than ideal (ahem), but we’ve never had a trip reach this level of less-than-ideal. i will have to close my eyes and remember this post next time we’re in a “moment” while traveling. hope you all stay well so you can fully enjoy the rest of your trip!

  6. Oh bless your hearts… all of you! Hope everyone is better from here on out.

  7. jess says:

    oh my god…i feel so bad for you guys! you seem to have a great attitude about it all though. so glad you’re all feeling better, and i hope the rest of your trip is a LOT more relaxing and enjoyable 🙂

  8. Christina says:

    Praying for complete healing for your whole family. Poor little kids (yes, those big brown eyes got me).
    Amazing how you can take shots of your kids waiting to be sick in the toilet and they still turn out awesome!! Only you Me Ra, only you.

  9. Melisa says:

    MeRa I am so glad you guys seem to be doing better now. Your photo’s told the story that is for sure. Not to mention what you wrote gosh! I hope your trip gets better 🙂

  10. jeramy says:

    wow….i know i shouldn’t be giggling….and i’m not…really….but you do tell the story so well. but where’s the picture of your black eye? huh? now that is some high power blogging….right? any body with me?

    seriously…such a bummer you guys have been sick. i really hope it passes soon. and brian….buddy….i’m pulling for you. 🙂


  11. Sue Christianson says:

    Oh my goodness! Praying for you guys! How in the world did Brian escape this? Someone throwing up on me would be enough to get me going! lol!

    Praying for a wonderful rest of your trip!!!!

  12. holy cow. grossness. coming from a person who can count on 1 hand the number of times i have thrown up in my life (and remember it)… i have trained my body to FIGHT it to the Nth degree. my kids have barfed a little…. but /i have to say, if YOUR scenario happened to ME, i would D I E. and I mean that. hate hate hate vomit. ugh. i pity you all for the unfortunate grossness of last week! here’s to hoping for STRONG and healthy guts!

  13. Oh man, nothing like going to the “Special Place” as you deal with the emesis of our own children. I am just glad that your special place includes a camera and a blog.

  14. Monica says:

    I’m so sorry, but I just can’t stop laughing….

  15. Michelle says:

    First off, I am glad everyone is feeling better!

    Second – I love the Pascaline series! I am reading this while sitting in my son’s karate class and I just laughed out loud! The other parents are looking at me oddly while I sit here smiling to myself! LOL

    Thanks for sharing, Me Ra! I love how you can make even throwing up look glamorous! You are a true artist! LOL

  16. Ashley J says:

    Oh no! I have to admit…I was laughing when I got to your climax. Ugh…I know, I’m horrible for laughing at you, huh? Only because I had a similar experience with a 150 lb. Down Syndrome student on a Jr. High retreat…oh and I have 4 kids too. You’re not any meaner than I am. No matter how sick my kids are as soon as I hear that pre-vomit cough, no matter how asleep they are, I yell “Hurry, hurry, hurry….just get it in the toilet!” I drag them or pick them up and run if I have to.
    I really do wish you well and hope you are all well soon and can fully enjoy the rest of your vacation.

  17. So Sorry the last 7 days have been so rough or should I say “RALPH”. I’m sure this was not at all in your itinerary. Leave it to the kiddo’s to keep it thrilling or should I say “SPILLING”! The first picture of the two of them is just classic, it captured the story from “BOTH ENDS” so to speak! Sorry for all the lame attempts at humor…just trying to make you laugh after a rough go.
    Glad you took some time to vent. Being that kind of sick is just down right nasty. Hope everyone is feeling much better and that Brain can dodge the bullet. Hope you can get some R&R and play time too.

  18. Melisa says:

    Mera, I just re-read your post again because I am sorry it was so entertaining. You do such a awesome job of describing all the details. I have to say though my favorite line is “What the hell. It’s time to shoot the sh#$% out of this.” Hope the rest of your trip is better 🙂

  19. Gina says:

    i am so sorry, but i laughed too!! this is the 3rd time i’ve come back to this post today… seriously, though, i hope you all feel better soon!

  20. Kelli says:

    I hate to say that I was laughing through parts of your post. I think as mother’s we all can relate and there is humor in just how ridiculously out of control these situations sometimes become. It’s either laugh or cry. Hopefully you can find the humor in the situation because I may have been crying as the kids were exploding from both ends! Beautiful pictures by the way..poor Pascaline..I saw the pictures of her eyes and I sooooo felt her pain. Glad everyone is on the mend!

  21. Kelli says:

    I feel much better about saying I was laughing through your post now that I just read all the other comments

  22. KarenE says:

    I laughed. Out loud.

    As a mother of eight children, I have had my fair share of holding buckets and bathing sick littles, but never once did I think of whipping out my camera. My life is changed forever. Thanks for the unconventional inspiration.

  23. Dawn Beirnes says:

    when my oldest son (who is 25 now) was old enought to get his hair cut, I took him to the local Sears that is in a mall. The boy was terrified of getting his hair cut? So being the good mom I was, I sat him in my lap and sat in the chair. He screamed so loud and hard that he threw up all over me, the floor, and almost got the girl who was cutting his hair. Needless to say, she wasn’t amused.(cissy light weight is what I think). The special part of this (and makes it so much more colorful) is the fact that he had been sick and taking PINK amoxicillian! I have been thrown up so mnay times by my 3 kids, it’s kind of second nature! Hope everyone feels better!

  24. Oh my…Just saw this post. So very real…. Loved the pictures and totally appreciated the ‘documenting’ of life that they portray…I have chicken pox pics and a shot of a sick 16 year old in the hospital recovering from meningitis…Not fun memories, but that was part of our lives at that time. So glad I did not have that sort of vomit session because I am a big time ‘sympathetic vomiter’..if that is a word, so it would have been times 2 whenever my kids got sick..thank heavens for my husband to help in those situations..he was the best at that! Be well and enjoy healthy and safe travels from now on!!! {{Hugs}}

  25. Wanted to add..I love the photos. You certainly have the eye to capture beauty in your images whatever you take. I also appreciated your ‘photo recipe’, but would like to know which lens you were using at 2.8. Thanks, Hillary

  26. Chicken pox is one hell of a nasty disease, it ruined my flawless skin a couple of years ago.*’:

  27. Blake Butler says:

    Chicken pox is one hell of a nasty disease, it ruined my flawless skin a couple of years ago.,’.

  28. i really hate chicken pox coz it can mess your skin”,.

  29. Joseph White says:

    diarrhea can sometimes be cause by spoiled foods or salmonella.:,

  30. last month i had a bad diarrhea while riding a bus, what a horrific experience’;,

  31. chicken pox is nasty, it can leave blisters on your skin,-*

  32. diarrhea is far from deadly but it is sure hell annoying and it sucks *

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