The life cycle of a vomiter

Stage 1: The body’s will–Notable during the first several years of a child’s life, Stage 1 is exhibited by body and mind exhibiting no will as it relates to vomiting. What wants to come up, will come up, and usually all over the carpet.

Stage 2: Irrepressible shame–Once children reach the age of five or six, they have developed the requisite social knowledge that vomiting in public (or anywhere other than a proper receptacle) will result in certain embarrassment. While the child does not yet have the ability to anticipate the vomiting reflex, he does have the ability to understand what will happen if he throws up on his Nintendo DSI. That recognition usually results in the vomit stopping at the millimeter just before the child’s lips part. It’s at this point the child must make a choice: swallow or shame? The author would like to note at age seven, he chose swallow and the whole of Mrs. Haseltine’s first grade glass still owes him a word of thanks.

Stage 3: Anticipatory running–Most of a human’s adult life is spent in Stage 3, during which the vomiter understands that the socially responsible thing to do is to find some proper place to throw up. This results in the light jog/full sprint exhibited by most sick adults that ends at a finish line that sounds a lot like “Blaaaaaaaagh.” Please note, inexperienced Stage 3 drinkers go back to Stage 1, and do not pass go until somebody cleans College Amy’s Orange Mad Dog 20/20 puke off the stairs..

Stage 4: What’s it matter anyway?–By the time most humans have reached Stage 4, they’ve realized that most of the preceding stages have been setting them up for the realization that it will all end at about Stage 1.5 anyway, that in which there is no bodily control, and even if there is, why bother exhibiting it? Either somebody will clean it up or the vomit will be something interesting to look at until it dries.

The author is currently the father of two children (Stages 1 & 2), and the proud owner of a Honda Pilot that has endured more vomit in four years than any vehicle should have to.

Brad Willis

Brad Willis is a writer based in Greenville, South Carolina. Willis spent a decade as an award-winning broadcast journalist. He has worked as a freelance writer, columnist, and professional blogger since 2005. He has also served as a commentator and guest on a wide variety of television, radio, and internet shows.

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2 Responses

  1. KenP says:

    I’m assuming you had a good time. At least when we go with what you remember.

  2. Skip says:

    I’m still in awe of your “puke and rally” performance at your Columbia goodbye party at Johnny’s Beanery. Fat White Boy claims that sidewalk barf stain is still there…

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