The drive between Salt Lake City, Utah and Las Vegas, Nevada is ~7 hours give or take a bathroom stop or a speeding ticket. On Friday morning at 6:30 am we hoped in my parent's Town and Country Van to make that drive for Boo's first out of state meet as an optionals gymnasts. She was scheduled to compete late Saturday morning.
We made good time and were able to spend the afternoon and evening enjoying friends, food, and good old Las Vegas fun. At 10 pm Salt Lake time we left the bright lights behind us tucked ourselves into bed excited for what the next day would bring....or so we thought.
|Gabby and Boo at Steak 'n Shake|
|Boo and some of the Walkers playing midway games and winning big!|
Suddenly she popped up clasped her hands to her mouth. “Are you going to throw-up?” I asked. “No, I don’t know what that was.” She said. Then she stood up and threw-up all over the side of the bed and proceeded to throw-up walking down one side of the bed, across the bottom, down the hall, into the alcove of the bathroom, and finally into the bathroom. The episode was so violent when she was done she had vomit all over her face and hands. It was all over the toilet top to bottom. It is one thing to throw-up it is quite another to projectile vomit especially that long after eating.
I put Boo in the shower noticing she had a light red rash on her hips and stomach and buttocks, with splotches on her shoulders and armpits. Surprisingly my parents slept through it. I did my best to clean the room with what I had on hand. I will spare you all the detail of scrubbing hotel carpet with washcloths, napkins, a trashcan, and a can of disinfectant.
After getting Boo back into bed the whole thing began to repeat. She balled up on her knees moaning and crying in pain. At about 6 am my mom woke up. I let her know what was going on.
An hour later I left Boo in my mom’s care while I set out on foot in the darkness to find a 7-Up. Unfortunately for me Las Vegas is an hour behind us and finding a working soda machine or an open store at 6 am isn’t easy.
In desperation I sat down on a lobby bench and phoned home to Boo’s papa. By the time we ended our call I saw the coffee cart was preparing to open only they didn’t sell soda. I explained my need for a cup of coffee to the lady and placed my order for one tall black cup as soon as she opened for business. She took my order told me it would be there asap and wished me luck in my soda search. I approached a women at the registration desk explained my situation and asked "Can you help me?” She said she could took my dollar and slipped away for what seemed like forever to the employee’s lounge to buy me an off brand lemon soda. I thanked her profusely retried my coffee and thank the brewer even more profusely for opening early for me and ran back to our room.
My mom and spend the next leg of time watching Boo sob over wanting to compete, sob in pain, nothing I did or said helped her. It was heart breaking.
|Boo on the drive to South Point|
I stepped out of the room to the balcony to placed the first of the phone calls I was dreading. I called her coach. Her phone was off so I just left a message. Then I called for help, calling another team family, Lindsey (the mom) and Gabby (gymnast) letting them know we were on our way to the South Point but it was looking grim. They offered to catch us and take us up their room.
By the time we hit the doors of the South Point she turned to me and said for the first time without tears, “I’m not competing.” We made it to the lobby bathroom and I placed the 2nd most dreaded call to our friends the Walkers who had driven down from SLC as part of their family vacation to see Boo compete. Of course they were very understanding.
We made it the sofas of hotel registration and there she gave up. I called our friends they agreed to meet us at the elevators but getting Boo between the front and the elevators was a huge struggle. Several times she crumbled to the floor and sobbed. And up until this point I had been pretty fine. Heart broken for my baby, a bit queasy from dealing with vomit (so not my thing), under caffeinated (too queasy to do much with the coffee I had gotten), blood sugar beginning to drop, and sick with worried about all the people effected by Boo being sick: my friends, my parents, her teammates and coaches… But when I saw Lindsey and Gabby turn the corner holding a horse stuffed animal and a bottle of Gatorade for Boo I completely choked-up.
They took us to their room. Put Boo in one of their beds (despite the risk to them) and together we waited. Lindsey informed us she had heard of others who were sick including coaches and other hotel guests, even her own mother had been ill over night. Lindsey also had news from Boo’s coach that had gotten the message I left her and she was ready to take Boo in any condition if needed.
I placed the last of the hard calls to Sophie’s dad, my friend Jeff. We were to have been Sophie’s ride home and he had checked Boo into the meet for me and was holding her credentials. Sophie answered his phone I told her Boo was sick and for Jeff to give Boo’s registration to coach Wendy. Then we waited and watched the clock while Boo laid unresponsive on the bed.
When timed warm-ups was 30 minutes away I called it. We had made every effort. There would be no question later for Boo to look back on and regret, really that was all I could give her. There was no way she would compete and we were going to pack-up and head home. I want to note as a mom I regret even trying to make it. Putting her through all that but had I not let her try even past the point of sensibility she would have always wondered if we gave up too early.
I called my parents to meet us at he front. I called the Walkers and told them we were going home. Lindsey and Gabby helped us to the door this time I was carrying Boo, she was too sick to walk. They handed us off to my waiting parents. I left the informing the coach and team to Lindsey and called Jeff back with the final verdict. Talking to Jeff I again got choked-up as he did his best to assure me he had Sophie taken care of and all I needed to do was take care of Boo. Everyone was behind us.
Within an hour, with Boo asleep-ish in car laying down on a bed my parents made her out of a sleeping bag spread across the van’s far back bench seat each of us taking turns staying with her and grabbing our stuff from the room, we had packed up and hit the road for home.
I received periodic checking on Boo calls (Jeff being an EMT made multiple calls) each one proof of what amazing friends we have. They also shared meet details with us including what sounded like an amazingly horrific fall on beam (even gym veterans say it was scary!) for Sophie when she missed her hands on her back hand spring but got up and finished her routine. And although driving 7 hrs with a sick kid isn’t any fun every mile was taking us closer to home. I still cannot believe we drove down and back like that.
She is home now sleeping (& snoring) on the sofa to sounds of Word Girl while we wait for her pediatrician to call us back and tell us if we need to take her in for a meningitis test. That little rash is a big red flag. He is checking for open cases and what cases ER's are reporting around the region before asking us to consent to the test. Honestly we aren't too worried about it,meningitis is a long shot- just a precaution.
And now I am going to go back to sleep while I can. BUT first thank you again to all those who helped us out this weekend. You guys amaze me, dazzle me with your kindness! AND Good luck to all those GTC Giants competing in your meets today. We <3 you guys! Win something for your Little Boo-Bear.