How to Avoid the Stomach Bug

Before everyone reads the title and thinks we have fallen victim, please let me take the time to mark our house safe from the stomach bug. 
Rumor on the street is that it's going around. 
But let me lay out a truth bomb for you:
I know, I know....
But spending thirteen of your nursing profession years in the pediatric setting proved this to be true. 
Moral of the story: You can't let your guard down. 
Much like Satan, the stomach bug comes to steal, kill, and destroy.
But with a few tricks up your sleeve, you might reduce your chances of getting it by at least 1%. 
Which means it's totally worth it.
Without further ado...
Things I Love Thursday: Avoiding the Stomach Bug
Guys. Prevention is key. We can't wait for the middle of the night vomitocolypse to come up with the game plan. 
Number one: Hydration and healthy foods.
Number two: supplements that you might not be sure about, but everyone else is doing it.
Not sure if these actually work or if we've just gotten lucky. But the days of kids coming home announcing their reading buddy barfed during carpet time is no time to start questioning what you put into your body in the name of immunity. 
Pop these babies down the shoot, and hope for the best. 
This is basically an orange flavored Alka Seltzer aimed at increasing your Vitamin C intake instead of balancing your nasty acid reflux pH.
It'll church your water up a tish with some fizz and flavor and may play a supporting role in your new favorite movie: "How Everyone was Puking but Me"
Literally what the pharmacist told me last week when my family was being picked off, one-by-one by some mystery fever/headache thing. 
He looked me dead in the eyes and said, "Erin. If you don't want to get sick, then maybe call us before you walk in the door of this place riddled with the germs of the unwell, and we'll bring your script to the car."
And then he said, "And double down on the Vitamin C."
Here's a good way to do that.
One packet.
8oz of water if you're a sipper. 4oz if you're a shooter. 
He also said B12. And I opted for a shot of it. Literal shot. In the arm. Because #savage
(Note to local Blufftonians: Bluffton Pharmacy is amazing, and you can get a B12 shot once a week. No script needed. Helps with immunity and the afternoon sleepies that typically result in another cup of coffee. Tiny needle, no pain.)
I remember hand washing was the first skills test we had to take in nursing school. 
We all looked at each other like, "Please don't tell our parents this is what they're paying for." 
But then I had kids and realized that hand washing isn't as important to some as it is others. 
We don't always have 30 seconds of good sudsing with warm water, making sure we attend to the nail base, under the nails, all the way up to our wrists...
For those times...
Hanitize (HAN-uh-tize) (v.) - to use hand sanitizer to disinfect your hands.
(As defined by Weston's American Dictionary)
I like Amazon's brand in bulk because of the added Aloe. 
If you're using these, there's a good chance you're no longer in prevention mode, but you've moved on to care giver mode. 
Someone in your space has fallen victim. 
We want to feel sorry for them, but we're too busy worrying out getting it ourselves.
Use these for doorknobs, countertops, face wipes*, butt wipes*, Kleenex*, and moist towelettes**.
*probably a bad idea technically but will feel right at the time 
**worst word combination ever but makes me laugh every time I see one at a rib/crab leg establishment. One minute you're elbow deep in rib eatin'. Next minute you're dabbing your gluttonous face with something called a moist towelette.
You might feel like a weirdo for even getting these, but it's a proven fact that he who laughs at his friend for purchasing barf bags is the last one to laugh while also being the first one to catch the bug.
These fall more into the protection category than prevention. 
Although, contamination is key.
Ever feed your kid a bunch of yogurt right before a stealth attack of the stomach bug while on a road trip?
You might think this is overkill, but can you really kill the stomach bug TOO much? 
Also, it'll double as your Breaking Bad Halloween costume, so no loss.
Before the days of pediatric nursing were the days of labor and delivery nursing. 
Sometimes while mid delivery, I'd manage to find myself in the bulls eye of the "spray zone." 
This is the sort of detergent I wish I had for days like that. 
And also on the days of vomit.
I always wanted to be a doctor when I grew up, but turns out growing up isn't fun. 
When the pukes arrive, I get to pretend like I'm scrubbing into the OR while washing down with this stomach bug soap that #slaysallday
Please do not let days of cabin fever and motherly compassion trick your well self into cuddling with a sick kid. Unless they're really struggling to stay alive, fend for yourself. 
And if they're old enough, throw their germ infested bodies in the guest room, reverse lock the door, slap this sign on it and request a text message announcement for when the coast is clear. 
It's better to live by the man down policy than the domino effect with it comes to this.
I've debated through the entire car rider line whether to tell you this or not, but after some research, it has been determined that the Norovirus (stomach bug's formal name) can live up to THREE WEEKS in your carpet.
If there's a new rug you've been eyeing, just look at the stomach bug season as a time to redecorate. 
But if the mess miraculously ends up on a hard surface...
1. Get down on your knees and thank Jesus.
2. Whisper (with a megaphone as to not get too close) to the sick one that they are your favorite and will be rewarded when all of this is behind you.
3. Sprinkle this minty freshness on that puke puddle and watch it soak it up like some sort of upchuck kitty litter. 
4. Start a nonprofit for all school janitors that sends them on Caribbean cruises for the entire Summer. 
I hate this topic, but it's one that needs to be addressed. 
Stock up. Arm yourselves. Conceal and carry ginger ale. 
Do what needs to be done to avoid the thing which shall not be spoken of again in this post. 
What are your tricks? Keeping them a secret is probably a sin. 

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