WARNING! This article contains graphic descriptions of a nasty stomach bug as well as graphic descriptions of the stripes of Jesus. Not for the sensitive reader!
It started with Annalise complaining that her belly hurt at bedtime. She seemed so tired that I was sure she would fall asleep and feel better in the morning. A few hours later she came down from her room to say that her belly still hurt. When I took her to the bathroom, she immediately threw up violently in the sink. I cleaned up the mess while Chris tried to comfort her. Soon she was back in the bathroom, but this time she made it to the toilet. This happened two more times and we were sure she had thrown up everything she had in her stomach. Still, I felt that I should sleep in the living room with her so we could both be close to the bathroom.
I tried to create makeshift beds while comforting my sweet seven-year-old. She is usually very healthy, and she just wasn’t used to getting sick. As soon as I got her settled down to sleep with a bowl next to her, I lay down in the darkness and wondered if I would be able to sleep on the hard floor. Annalise was only asleep for an hour before she woke up groaning.
“Go to the bathroom! Go to the bathroom!” I spoke with urgency.
She tried but the bowl got the most of it. This happened a few more times, and sleep seemed out of the question.
“That’s the last time, Mama. I don’t have anything left,” Annalise said bravely. We both tried to sleep again. It wasn’t long before Annalise was vomiting in the bowl right next to me, and I could feel the splashing. I got her to the bathroom, spoke tender words to her, cleaned everything, treated the room with essential oils, and tried to rest again.
“That’s the last time, Mama,” Annalise said as she practically crumbled onto her bedroll and pillow. I thought surely, she would start feeling better! Her body must have gotten rid of all the sickness but now.
Wrong! She continued to throw up yellow bile while experiencing diarrhea at the same time. I had to give her two showers in the middle of the night when she seemed almost too weak to stand. We went back down the stairs as I supported her.
My sweetheart, Annalise, had learned the drill by now. She would go to the bathroom, throw up in the toilet, flush the toilet, rinse out her mouth, collapse in the floor, and fall asleep immediately until the next wave hit her. I lay anguishing and praying, “Jesus, have mercy on my sweet girl. Touch her and heal her!”
It felt like torture to me! I knew it must be food poisoning or a very powerful bug, and her body was doing what was necessary to heal. If I had been a new mom, I would have been consumed with worry.
Being experienced nursing sick children, I have learned several important truths:
my children always recover,
the sickness always lasts longer than I think it should,
even so, the sickness is always over in a very short time.
I have also learned to listen to the Holy Spirit.
I could hear Him whisper, “It is well. Be at peace.”
By morning, I had lost count of how many times Annalise had vomited, but it was at least 22. I have never seen a child of mine get sick like that before! Annalise never showed any signs of being severely dehydrated (such as no tears in her eyes or saliva in her mouth), and I knew the best place for her was resting peacefully at home. We both slept for a few hours, and I didn’t even get up to make Chris’s sandwich before work. I slept through all the normal morning activities.
Finally, Annalise sat up and begged for water. “This is a good sign! Perhaps she is better!”
It is so important to not give water or food too soon after throwing up, so I was cautious. Annalise gulped down the tiny bit of water I gave her. The next half an hour was filled with her tired little voice, “Can I have more water now? Is it time now? Please!”
After half an hour, I relented and gave her some more, and then more. She seemed fine, so I gave her some more. My heart sank when I heard her in the bathroom, violently getting rid of all the water she just drank.
“Ok this is getting serious! Time for battle!”
I began to bind and loose and command and decree! I made essential oil roller bottles to rub on her belly and feet. I gave her Epsom salt baths to detox and rehydrate her.
Annalise did not throw up again! Praise God!
She slept for a few hours. She was thirsty when she woke up, so I followed the advice I had read in Mommy Diagnostics. I made some ginger tea and only gave her a few teaspoons every half an hour. Her stomach had shrunk and couldn’t handle anything more. By bedtime we had finished the cup of tea. I continued the essential oils all day.
She slept peacefully in her bed the entire night!
The next day she was so hungry yet didn’t want to eat anything. I convinced her to drink a little bone broth which gave her nourishment in a very digestible form. She ate tiny bits of food throughout the day and was just fine, other than being weak and exhausted.
By the next day she was still tired but starting to play in small bursts. We had turned a corner!
That night some of the children slept in our pop-up camper. Cooper came into our room in the middle of the night to tell us that he had just thrown up. He spent most of the night in the bathroom but thank God he was old enough to take care of himself. He wasn’t as sick as Annalise had been, so by the morning his only symptom was exhaustion.
Then I found out that Aria, our three-year-old, had been snuggling with Cooper until he had gotten sick.
“Jesus, don’t let her get sick!” I prayed. I wondered if this bug was going to go through the entire family and how long it would last.
The following night Aria woke us and said, “It feels like there are bugs in my belly!”
I got up as fast as I could and ushered her into the bathroom. She was feverish and wore a grimace.
“Do you need to throw up?” I asked. “Here, let’s go to the toilet.”
Three-year-olds don’t always know they are going to throw up before they do. How was I going to manage all night with Aria? We couldn’t go to the downstairs bathroom and sleep on the new carpet in the living room. She would throw up all over it! The only logical choice was to spend the night with her in the upstairs bathroom. Even though it is a spacious bathroom, there is no place to lay down. I tried to sit on a bath chair and hold her on my lap to comfort her, but that was anything but comfortable! Her long legs were hanging down awkwardly, her body was hot with fever, and she couldn’t stay still.
“The bugs in my belly are jumping!” Aria said. “My arms and legs hurt.”
This was followed by squirming and groaning, “Oh I wish this never happened to me,” she said with all the agony her cute three-year-old voice could muster.
“This is not going to end well,” I thought to myself, anticipating vomit to explode from her little body at any moment.
“Jesus, please heal her!” I prayed.
Aria insisted on getting back into her bed because she was so tired. All my mothering instincts told me that this was a BAD idea. I have scrubbed vomit off mattresses and carpets before, and I dreaded doing it again. However, I didn’t have any better ideas, so I put her in her bed with a bowl right next to her. I pulled out the trundle mattress and moved it out of the splash zone. I lay down, anticipating another night like I had had with Annalise.
Quiet descended upon the room as Aria fell asleep and her two sisters, miraculously, never woke up. I lay thinking about Aria’s sadness and groaning in the bathroom. I remembered what it felt like to have a stomach bug that attacks you with pangs of pain and nausea. It will abate but then comes back again in earnest, threatening to take over your insides until you have very little control. I hated that feeling! I hated that Aria was having that feeling. I wished I could take that feeling for her.
Then I thought, “Jesus DID take the suffering for us!”
During Holy Week I was listening to Give Him 15. I was stuck by a description of the beating of Christ before the crucifixion. April 15, 2022 (givehim15.com)
This same description can be found in the Give Him 15 post for today (Good Friday 2023).
From Gethsemane, Messiah was led to a mock trial, after which He was beaten mercilessly with a cat-o-nine-tails. This procedure was so brutal that some recipients didn’t survive it. The leather cords, tipped with sharp metal, tore at the flesh of the victim ripping off pieces of flesh. They not only lacerated the back, but wrapped around to the front of the victim’s body, including the face. It is hard to describe this lashing without being too graphic for most readers. Suffice it to say that when finished, the victim was often unrecognizable.
The soldiers also beat Christ with their fists and spat on His face. To mock Him as “the King of the Jews,” a crown made of thorns was placed on His head and pressed into His skin, causing great pain and more loss of blood. When the ordeal was finished, Messiah was so mangled and covered with spittle and blood that He truly was unrecognizable. “Many people were shocked [astonished; appalled] when they saw him. His appearance was so damaged [disfigured; marred] He did not look like a man; His form was so changed they could barely tell He was human.” (Isaiah 52:14; The Expanded Bible) The added punishments and torture, much more than the average victim of crucifixion was afflicted with, can only be explained as the fury of hell, trying to snuff out the life of the Son of God.
Yeshua received this for you and me. Isaiah 53:5 and 1 Peter 2:24 tell us it was through this beating that we can be healed. Place your faith in this today. Receive healing by placing your faith in His substitutionary sacrifice.Give Him 15