What I Learned From That One Time Quincey Threw Up In My Car

It is Wednesday. It is also summer break for those of you who get the privilege of the school system’s schedule. And a couple of weeks ago was my last day of “officially” being a nanny. So, the hot weather mixed with the slew of emotions from the end of my two-year-long job have brought about some nostalgia. I’m thinking back on eventful moments from the past two years, namely the time I spilled a whole bottle of olive oil on my bosses’ wooden kitchen floor, the time Quincey chopped off all of her hair (not on my watch), and the subject of this post, the time Quincey vomited in my car. Let’s take a hot, hot, hot, smelly journey together, my friends.

So when I had settled into my job as a nanny, Quincey and I got into the habit of driving the backroads to kill time (and also because she falls asleep in the car) before we had to pick up Max from the bus stop. My Jeep Cherokee was black, had cloth seats that retained heat wonderfully, and had a broken air conditioning system. As I’m sure you can imagine, this combination makes for very enjoyable car rides in the heat (which Quincey loved. I am not a monster.)

On one of these said days, while driving to kill time (per Quincey’s request), I hear an awful retching sound from the backseat of my car, then the slow build-up of sobs from  a cute, tiny four-year-old girl.

She taught me some things that day.

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Thanks for all the life-lessons, Q.

1. I am so much weaker than I thought. The sight of a child covered with vomit in a 90 degree car combined with the smell of a child covered with vomit in a 90 degree car was enough to very literally bring me to my knees.

2. My fight or flight instinct is definitely flight dominant. Real-talk, I wanted to take off down the road and never come back ever. I very seriously considered it.

3. As disgusting as a puke-drenched 4-year-old is, it’s almost equally as hilarious. You’re going to tell me I’m terrible. That’s because I am. The sad eyes, the helpless face, the simultaneous self-disgust. Also, my defense mechanism when faced with anything that disgusting or displeasing is to laugh. Really hard. So it took everything in me to keep from doing that.

4. Nothing in life is indispensable. That cute new white dress goes in the garbage. So does the car seat. And eventually, so does your beloved Jeep.

5. Some things just can’t be fixed. No matter how many times you scrub the backseat, there will always be the looming memory (and smell) of chicken nugget barf. And a cop will probably ask you about it when you get pulled over on another 90 degree day (no ticket by the way).

So thanks to Q for teaching me lots about myself that I hadn’t known before the Puke Fiasco. And then lots after that. I have to take a second to point out how thankful I am that I got such a great gig straight after highschool, because I seriously had no idea what I was going to do. And let’s be real, they’ll never actually get rid of me.

Thanks for reading this week, friends! I’ll get back on my schedule at some point, but lately I’ve just been writing when I feel like writing! It’s summer, give me a break.

See you all next week!



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