Several years ago I was training for the Chicago Marathon and was in Michigan for a visit. My sister-in-law Holli was in town from Hawaii, and my mom and I were excited to spend time with her. I got up early one morning and went for a 10-mile training run – the longest I had ever run in my life. I was dramatically tired and starving when my mom and Holli picked me up after my run.
We went straight to Beaner’s - the local coffee shop – so that I could fuel up. We got our iced coffee mochas, and Holli and I were waiting at a table while my mom got the bagels. And that’s when Holli told me a shocking story about a stripper in my hometown that was being sued because she sprayed breast milk into a patron’s eye. (There are so many things wrong with this story, that we won’t even get into that).
She told me this just as I was taking a huge sip of my iced coffee. And that’s when everything went wrong: I was so horrified at the thought of a stripper spraying breast milk into someone’s eye, that I totally lost control. My iced coffee mocha came out my nose which triggered my gag reflex and before I knew it, I was puking all over the table (and the floor and the chair) at one of the only coffee shops in Jackson. As in – my mother knew everyone there – as in – I had graduated from high school with the husband and wife owners (Matt and Denise – I’m super sorry for puking all over the coffee shop! Yes – it was me!)
Anyways – while I’m puking, Holli is laughing so hard that she’s crying and peeing her pants. All of the other coffee-drinkers are staring at me, and I can’t stop throwing up. I’ve never thrown up that much in my life. It was coming out my nose, and it was happening so fast that I couldn’t even breathe. Seriously – I was worried about myself.
And then my mom turns around to see what’s going on, and is absolutely mortified by what I’m doing. She marches over and DEMANDS that I stop immediately.
“ANNA – You stop that right now.
Stop throwing up now – this is ridiculous.
I live here. I said stop it. I’m never going to be able to come in here again.
I’m going to have to go through the drive through.
Holli – stop laughing. Get her outside, now!”
So in all my gasping for air, I-need-help-because-I-can’t-stop-puking state, Holli managed to drag me outside, where I proceeded to puke in the bushes. Unfortunately, I was standing in front of the wall-to-wall glass window of the Roly Poly next door.
Like I said – just a random story about why my mom still has to use the drive through at the coffee shop, refused to ever step foot into that Roly Poly and still thinks that I was puking on purpose.
And a pledge to my children:
Dear Miles, Alice and Simon,
If you are ever throwing up uncontrollably for a reason other than drinking too much alcohol, I promise not to yell at you and demand that you stop immediately – even if I am totally mortified. I will get you a cool cloth from the bathroom and use my own shirt as a bucket. That is how much I love you. XOXO, Mom