Ig­no­rance is bliss... if it avoids ‘who’s stay­ing off work to care for a poorly child?’ chat


Gloucestershire Echo - - FAMILY MATTERS - Richard IRVINE

“HE’S had a cou­ple of wa­tery nap­pies,” the nurs­ery as­sis­tant told me, as I col­lected the twins.

Reg­u­lar read­ers will know this is a med­i­cal term im­ply­ing there may be trou­ble ahead for both Thomas and his par­ents.

It’s a phrase nei­ther I, nor Victoria, ever like to hear so I de­cided to keep this new in­for­ma­tion to my­self.

There’s no point spend­ing the evening re­cal­cu­lat­ing our next few work­ing days on the off-chance Thomas may be ill. In fact, I’d ar­gue ig­no­rance can be bliss if it al­lows you to watch tele­vi­sion in peace, rather than ar­gue over who should can­cel work and stay at home with a sick child.

He seemed fine and I fell asleep fairly con­fi­dent the wa­tery nap­pies were anom­alies in an oth­er­wise healthy child.

Thank­fully, I’m not a doc­tor be­cause our early morn­ing wake-up call was Thomas be­ing sick in bed. How­ever, he seemed fine once we spruced him up and he was even chat­ting (non­sense) and danc­ing with his monkey (not a real one).

I re­minded Victoria nurs­ery started at 8am and he was more than well enough to go.

“You’re jok­ing, he’s not go­ing any­where, he’s been sick,” Victoria said, a lit­tle too ag­gres­sively. There was a case for send­ing him, pre­dom­i­nantly be­cause nurs­ery does not op­er­ate a money-back pol­icy, if a child fails to at­tend.

The busi­ness would be im­pos­si­ble to run with­out a guar­an­teed in­come, so it’s com­pletely un­der­stand­able they don’t re­fund you.

Any­way, Victoria had nom­i­nated her­self as the carer for the day.

Thank­fully, Thomas was out shop­ping by lunchtime and by the evening was on fine form.

Nat­u­rally, two days later, I went to bed feeling a lit­tle un­well know­ing I’d caught the bug, but con­fi­dent I’m far stronger than Thomas so might not even no­tice it. Un­for­tu­nately, I had the same symp­toms but weirdly, I felt ter­ri­ble and was forced to can­cel work and take to my bed.

The only ex­pla­na­tion to me was I’d caught a stronger mu­ta­tion of the virus but thank­fully, Florence Nightin­gale was on hand to watch my demise.

“It’s a good job we didn’t send you to nurs­ery to get our money’s worth, have you got a wa­tery nappy?” Victoria help­fully added as I com­plained about stom­ach pains.

“He was out shop­ping with me and even car­ried the bas­ket by now,” she added to re­in­force my own weak­ness in di­rect com­par­i­son to Thomas.

As she left the room laugh­ing to her­self, it struck me there was a new sher­iff in town, one who was bet­ter equipped to han­dle a wa­tery nappy than the old one.

It’s not just the kids fall­ing ill

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