The Car-Sick Kid

In his infancy, the Car-Sick Kid hated car trips.  My normally placid baby would arch his back and screech as I tried to plug him into his seat.  I had hardened my heart to his screeches, knowing that they would dwindle to bitter bleats by the time we got to our destination.  Good times.

The Car-Sick Kid unveiled his true self on his first long car trip from Alice Springs to Tennant Creek, when he screeched for an hour before violently throwing up on his steamy little body, five minutes away from the Devil’s Marbles and 100 kilometres away from the Tennant Creek township and running water.  It was the start of his illustrious car-sick career.

Over the years, I have tried every so called remedy: shoes and socks off, windows open, ginger or ginger products (ginger beer was a disaster for the sugar sensitive car-sick kid!).  Frankly, an ice cream container, a towel and mighty quick reflexes were the only consistently successful applications.

Last year when my son was 9, we took a family trip to the coast; one that inevitably means traversing  Clyde Mountain.  Picturesque though it may be, the Clyde has hairpin turns on steep slopes.  Car-Sick Kid was asleep while his brother and sister watched a DVD (God Bless the car DVD).  I sat in the front and stared at a spot on the windscreen, finishing my coffee while SH swooped the car around the curves like Peter Brock or that Andretti guy, you know, the car racer.  Such a bad move – but I’d newly started this thing where I was no longer going to repeatedly remind him not to do things that I had reminded him not to do before.  Like taking hairpin curves too fast with car sickees in the vehicle.  But anyway.

While focussing the very core of my nauseous being on what was once possibly a dainty and attractive flying insect now smashed on the windscreen in front of me, I heard a little grunt.  And then a little cough.  And before I knew it, I was whipping around with my empty (Thank Heavens, can you imagine the mess?  the smell?  the….ooh….just…..give me a second….) – my empty travel mug.  I was Buffy the Vomit Catcher, with a reactive reflex I never knew I had.  Every last errr…bit was captured.  I never did get a replacement mug.

I blame myself (what, not enough guilt?) – he gets it from my side of the family.  My mother’s stories of rolling with nausea at the fumes of Nana’s Oil of Ulan – unable to crack a window lest it unsettle Nan’s blow wave, matched my own experiences 20 years later.  My brother once strained blackberry seeds through his teeth in a projectile that hit the windscreen from the backseat – and then bounced back again.

And I, I am a car-sick kid grown, unfortunately, to a Car-Sick Grownup.  Pathetic.  I’m lucky because I get the front seat by default (I’m bigger than you three, so I get to sit in the front.  Plus, I gave birth to you, so I deserve it.)  But don’t ask me to look at maps or read too many signs out loud to you if you’re driving with me in the car.  I’m just saying.

14 thoughts on “The Car-Sick Kid

  1. After many years of puke-catching and cleaning I’m glad to report that Jack (at 12) is now legally allowed to sit in the front seat, which has rectified this problem. Almost!!!!!!
    Now I just drop him off on the way when he starts getting queesy (sp?) and he walks the rest of the way while I find the parking spot. Hopefully we will never be in the middle of a highway when this new remedy is resorted to.

    Incidentally, I use this tactic for getting a seat next to my son on planes, trains and automobiles. No seats to together (Ump!). Would you mind swapping seats with me so that I can sit with my son? No? Oh well, then would you be so kind as to hold his sick bags for him as he doesn’t travel well. Yes, you will move after all – how kind!

    Works every time!

  2. Long suffering car healthy kids who aren’t above tormenting the sick one! I warn them Lavenderbay, that one day it will come back and spit up on them…it’s just a matter of time!

    It’s amazing JM how the front seat changes everything…and I mean it. I will sit in the back seat but I can’t talk to people next to me!

    LOL! Dennis/James you crack me up! Funnily enough the last time our family was on a boat, I was the only one who didn’t get seasick, and I think it’s because I accidentally swallowed a fly!

  3. I get car sick too, if I am in the back. The front is OK. But, I can – and do – fast rides and fairground rides. And I love to fly in small air craft. Figure that out?

  4. You got me Rhubarb, I like the rides with the swings on the long ropes that go round (the ones that my kids call the ‘baby rides’)…and that’s about it. Flying is wrong and unnatural too. I don’t even like riding horses fast. It’s sad is what it is.

  5. Buffy The Vomit Catcher – excellent. I had car sickness as a child. I still don’t think I’d risk reading but otherwise it seems to have disappeared. I have to say I love that ride too. I haven’t been on it for years but good memories of flying safely.

  6. Pingback: Carsick stories | Ewomencleanse

  7. I too am a car sickee. Have been forever. I used to dread the trips in the Kingswood station wagon from Nowra to Sydney to see relatives – always a day trip, and a three hour trip each way in those days. And if I was truly unlucky, my relatives would have their kerosene heaters alight. Heaven forbid going to Canberra over Cambewarra Mountain and up Barrengarry. Oh the humanity! I am ok now if I drive. Mostly. No chemist product helps, herbal products barely help, old wives remedies are completely ineffective. I can’t even cope if someone sways as they stand in front of me when they are talking. Good luck with with your own and your junior car sickee. I feel your nauseous ness!

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