Children always call for mammy, not daddy, in times of dire and messy need...

Published 28/01/2014 | 05:38

Why do children always get sick during the night? It's one of life's greatest conundrums isn't it? There you are fast asleep in your leaba, all snuggled up under the duvet and suddenly you hear a little voice moaning, 'Mum, I feel sick' and before you can say 'Grab a bucket' they've done it everywhere.

It's funny how they always call for their mother as well. It's never 'Daddy come and clean up my puke'. Oh no it's always The Mammy in times of dire and messy need. 'Mum I've done a poo, wipe my bum,' or 'Mum my nose is bleeding all over your good white towels.' Daddies get to teach them to ride their bikes, Mammies clean up the mess.

The house was struck with a vomiting bug last week. The youngest started it, by waking up during the night and saying 'I think I'm going to vomit.' At least in fairness to the poor child she managed to make it to the bathroom door before throwing up the contents of her stomach. Her older brother never manages to make it out of bed before he does.

It was like a scene from the exorcist. How someone so small could manage to almost hit the ceiling as well as throwing up on me, herself and the bathroom walls is beyond me. Her biggest concern was that she had managed to get her feet and a considerable amount of time was spent reassuring her that once they were washed they would actually be ok again.

The following night the diarrhoea started. We had just put her to bed and she started complaining of a tummy ache. Hot water bottles and calpol were dispensed and we had just nodded off when we were awoken by shrieks from her bedroom. Four hours later and several toilet rolls we all finally managed to get some sleep.

The next day, feeling like I'd been at an all night party, drinking neat vodka, I opened the curtains in the living room to discover the dog had puked on eight different parts of the carpet. He lay in his bed looking sheepish and a little unwell. He wouldn't eat or drink and his nose was dry.

All day he lay by my side, gazing up at me mournfully. I really thought he could be on his way to Doggy Heaven and was distraught at the thought of having to explain to the children when Himself walked through the door and the dog jumped up wagging his tail in excitement. After me minding him all day!

I fell into bed that night exhausted from nursing sick children and sick dogs, cleaning bathroom walls and floors and scrubbing carpets. Yes Yes I know when you have a family, this is what you sign up for, but could someone up above not arrange it so all these mini crises didn't happen at the one time?

Ten minutes later, a little head appeared around the door. The eldest arrived in looking like a ghost. 'Mum, I don't feel very well. I think I'm going to be sick.'

Here we go again!

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