Last night I lay in bed listening to Horace’s snoring, swearing inwardly as usual – when I heard little footsteps on the attic stairs. Darlek plonked herself down next to me. ‘Mum, I don’t feel well’. Dreading another puking bug, I headed downstairs with her and made up the dodgy sofa bed. (Sausage threw up earlier on this week).
To be absolutely honest, I was glad to have an excuse to get away from the snoring, and chatted a little with Darlek as I made sure she was ok. She had a hot waterbottle for comfort, Calpol for her tummyache, books to look at as she couldn’t sleep, and a potty to throw up in if the worst happened. I realised a little while after that she was probably just a bit sleepless and bored. This quickly became apparent when she started telling me jokes. Bleary eyed, curled up under a coverless duvet on a slanting sofa bed, I was treated to ‘What do you get if you cross a Panda with Bamboo?…….long pause, while I try and guess….’Pamboo!!’ I have to admit I did think it wasn’t a bad joke, even if it made absolutely no sense at all.
Darlek made a couple of token retching noises in the potty, and then started telling me about a nightmare she’d had. It didn’t sound so scary. but it seemed to have bothered her quite a bit.
‘There was this pig, and it turned into a lion, and that turned into a frog, and that turned into a rabbit, and then that turned into a bird, and then that turned into……’
I can’t remember the end of that because I think I dozed off. Darlek woke me up again, saying she couldn’t sleep.
‘Is it morning yet mum?’
(The room was pitch black, not even a tweet from an early bird outside the window)
‘Not yet, love. If you can’t sleep, read a book’
Darlek, tossed and turned and said she couldn’t sleep again, and I asked her, with more than a little pleading tone, not to talk to me unless she thought she was going to be ill, because I needed to sleep. I dozed off again.
This must have gone on for about an hour I think. Eventually Darlek and I dozed off. Suddenly and without warning a woman started singing ‘IF YOU’RE HAPPY AND YOU KNOW IT, CLAP YOUR HANDS!!’ and I rocketed out of sleep and nearly fell out of the bed. Darlek’s push button activated singing teddybear was singing its little furry heart out. It was a gut reaction – I grabbed it, threw it on the bed, and shoved my pillow over it, pressing down, anything to stop the singing. To be honest, on recollection, it was as close to committing teddy murder as I’ll ever get. Once a paw is pressed, there’s no way to stop it singing a full verse, so it wasn’t just a case of finding an off switch.
Luckily it didn’t wake Darlek. The thing that really bothered me, was that I hadn’t pressed any of the paws, and it had been sat on the windowledge so Icouldn’t have nudged it. I lay there in the dull light of very early morning, staring at the teddy, back on the windowledge. It stared back at me with an evil look in its eye (or so I imagined). I wondered if we had a teddy poltergeist on our hands for a while and then fell asleep again.
Horace woke me up as he came downstairs. He told me that when he woke up, he noticed three three teddies sat neatly lined up on the bed where I usually sleep. So the other teddies had been wandering around the house overnight too. (Sausage had more than a little to do with this I suspect).
It turns out that Darlek’s teddybear has been doing this for a while, must be a faulty connection or something. She says it happens at night every now and then, and doesn’t seem bothered by it. Well, it scared the hell out of me anyway! Darlek must be a tougher cookie than I realised.
I don’t think I’m that keen on teddies with a life of their own, in fact I think I’m going to take the batteries out of Darlek’s singing bear – and if Sausage’s teddies think they can take my place they’ve got another thing coming! I bet they’d be rubbish at the school run.