There’s Nothing Like Puke for the Holidays


About 50 percent of the people I know got sick in the last 2 weeks of December. And while many Facebook posts bragged about a healthy Christmas, it seemed like for a lot of people, the Christmas cup was definitely half empty from a heath perspective.

This year, my entire family got sick. For us, it happened in the week leading into Christmas. You know that week, right? The week of last-minute Christmas shopping, menu preparing and school concerts. The week where you have to keep the Christmas train on the tracks.

Well our Christmas train did not stay on the tracks. It derailed itself just outside of Puketown, USA.

I’ll spare you the details but let’s just say, when I go back to work, I am going to tell people that for vacation, I went on a 36 hour cleanse and took up smoking 3 packs of menthol’s a day.

Having been sick over the Christmas holidays before, I can honestly say that there is no great time. It’s all a Santa Sack full of suck. Each time differs in terms of suckitude.

Sick before Christmas – If you are super prepared and got EVERYTHING done on the days leading up to the big day, then you can afford to get sick. Unfortunately, many people are not so lucky and need this time. Should you lose these precious days or hours to a virus, you may need to have to switch to Plan B (pre-cooked chicken and canned cranberry sauce) and get some excuses and apologies read (Santa has been known to leave IOU’s). If you are on the NICE list, perhaps you’ll get some last minute assistance from empathetic friends and family.

Sick during Christmas – Be prepared for the phrase “Christmas is ruined” to be thrown around. As Christmas is a time of guilt, being sick on the big day will invoke a wrath of the deadly sin. Maybe you were hosting and everyone is relying on you to bring the magic. Or maybe you are visiting relatives in what could be the last family Christmas ever. It’s pretty much a lose-lose situation and by being sick you have ruined Christmas. One thing is for certain, love is NOT stronger than antibiotics. If you are terribly sick, you will do no one any favors by spreading your germs everywhere. Take the night off. Your family will understand (in time….I’m sure….maybe….).

Sick for New Years – Missing the big ball drop on account of excess mucous is not the worst thing in the world and, given the other scenarios, this one is best case from a parenting perspective. Opting to stay home and watch Ryan Seacrest is a nice alternative to champagne and confetti. You’ll save lots of money, give your liver the night off and start the new year safe and in comfy pajamas. Hopefully you are better by the time work starts or else everyone will want stories about your crazy New Year’s Eve bash.

So what about you? Were you healthy over Christmas or did you go down for the count? Feel free to share your war stories.

Mark Medland

Author: Mark Medland

Mark Medland is a 40 something father of five who lives in Mississauga, Ontario. When he is not working at one of the big Canadian banks or raising his kids, he likes to cheer for the Habs and eat amazing food with his wife Vanessa.

One thought

  1. For the past few years I have been on turkey duty. A couple of years ago, I found myself with a weird tummy thing on Christmas Eve. My kids came crashing through my door before the sun came up and I tried my best to keep my head from spinning.
    I did have to sit down on the kitchen floor a few times while making Christmas dinner but I made it. And so did Christmas dinner. By the time dinner was ready I felt better and was at least able to eat some.

    Hope you’re all feeling better!

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