Charge of the dad brigade. Or. The dangers of homework

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August 8, 2014 by Dadinator

Working late in a dark study. It’s a familiar thing for teacher parents out there. You come home, you wrangle your kids and you get them to sleep. Then and only then can tackle your “homework”…..

Recently I have started working full-time again. I’ve worked as a relief teacher for a while now (18 months or so), and while it is unstable in terms of income and in terms of a personal routine, it has had its benefits. Random days off, no work follows you home and you actually get to leave at 3:30 (or so), and your weekends are yours.

However I am employed in the medium term. It’s a short-term fill-in job, but it is full-time. Meetings, marking and planning are back on the agenda. Last night I had to prepare some materials for a year 7 English class. We’re working on “information texts”, writing about facts and communicating them through writing.

It was not easy to get started. The kids needed my full attention after I got home, dinner, baths and then bed. The Lad was unwell and occasionally having fits of coughing intermittently, so I knew it was going to be a rough one. The Lad did not disappoint. I was with him till after 9pm. After that was done I came out to do my usual magic trick rocking our little girl to sleep. It worked, and I kept her on me for a while as The Mamanator had some quality time not being in physical contact with a child.

I seem to have a knack for getting our baby to sleep. I think it’s because I am very boring, and could talk a velociraptor to sleep. Job done I caught some important educational programming (Preppers and Bad Ink – quality), before trying to put the girl down to sleep. –

It did not go well. I sometimes think there are children with an inbuilt spirit level with an alarm attached to it which goes off when they hit horizontal. Our girl is like that some nights, and tonight was one of those nights. I went back to rock her some more and failed miserably. The Mamanator realised that I needed time to work and took her off me to settle, and I retreated into the study to do some planning. I opened up the baby gate we use to keep our computer safe from the kids, and logged into the computer.

And then it happened, a cough and a cry from The Lad. I ducked in to give him some water and calmed him down while swearing under my breath because I still hadn’t made a start. But it passed and I disappeared back into the study.

I had found a short video about the danger of using your phone while walking on the street. It’s causing accidents as people neglect their physical well-being in favour of keeping track of their online lives and/or texting their friends. It included footage of people walking into trees and walls and one guy walking off a train platform. I was going to use it to give the kid’s a topic to write about and some information to write with. I concocted a lesson around it and satisfied relaxed into some online loitering on Facebook etc…

Coughs. Again. I shot up and bolted. I bolted towards the cries of my son. I bolted to be his rock in time of distress. I bolted to keep him feeling well when he was sick. I bolted. Straght into the closed baby gate.


Over I went and my head caught the corner of a chair that happened to be sitting in the corridor. I yelled in pain. I woke up EVERYONE.

Dazed for a moment I stood up and felt my face. Satisfied it was intact I made my way into The Lad’s room ready to get on with dadding it up.



I put my hand on my eyebrow and felt a warm fluid. I had cut something open. I called out to get help, and ran to the bathroom. I had split my head open just above my eyebrow. I soaked it up with tissue and toilet paper. I held it on my head, got The Mamanator to look at it and did a quick self-assessment of my injury. It hurt, but not much. It was bleeding but not a big wide cut.

In the meantime The Mamanator (Supermum) got BOTH kids asleep on her own, with one hand and one breast, leaving me to shove the gash in her face and ask “Does it look bad” and “do I need stitches” over and over again. It’s a wife’s job in these instances.

I decided I was capable of patching it up myself, so I raided one of our first aid kits for gauze and taped my eyebrow up myself.

Not elegant... But home-made.

Not elegant… But home-made.

I got to bed and was covered in sympathy. And then I started laughing. Then The Mamanator started laughing.

Then The Lad started coughing, so I trundled over to his bed, curled up beside him and slept.

And by morning the bleeding and stopped and all was well.

Safety gate my foot….


I’d love to hear I’m not the only person to injure themselves on baby safety stuff around the house.

Share your stories in the comments, and share this story with anyone who might take some solace from laughing at my own misfortune.


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