Pulling an All Nighter

The notion of pulling an all nighter is not new to me. It is when you say, wake up on a Tuesday morning and 24 hours later, you are still without sleep. This happened to me last night. But more about that later.

Pulling and all nighter is demonstrated throughout the ages in various stages of life.

0-10 years
You may pull an all nighter as a very young baby. This is because you came from a squishy warm place and had no oxygen in your lungs, to a loud scary world with two hapless strangers staring at you and shoving a nipple in your mouth every times you screamed. The strangers sit up with you as you wail the night away, before you fall into a deep deep sleep at about 5am, only to wake 2 hours later fresh as a daisy. Welcome to the all nighter baby!

Teenage Years
Most girls I went to high school with were serious studiers who pulled all nighters with the aid of no-doze and coffee to swat for exams. I was usually watching Melrose Place at the time. But these chicks had some staying power and would often brag about how long they had gone without sleep – while more often than not I slept in till 11am and very nearly missed all my exams.

OK – this is when all nighters were really important. When clubs do not really kick off until 11pm and you are still trying to plan what you are doing with your night at 9.30pm. Fuelled by booze, podium dancing and being a general baad-ass while bumping and grinding away to Shaggy’s Boombastic. You watch your mates pash off with ferals and quite often enjoy breakfast at McDonalds with bleary eyed shift workers. My friend Mrs Finlayson once pulled an all nighter like this, only to spruce herself up in the McDonalds Bathroom and travel straight to work, where she was a kindergarten teacher. These are the all nighter glory days.

All nighters here more often than not revolve around breastfeeding, shitty nappies, walking the deserted streets with a pram and crying gently into your pillow. These all nighters are the longest ones. Sometimes they come in pairs which can send you straight to your mums for 24 hours of weeping and sleeping. If you are here now, I salute you sister. xoxo

You spend night after night worrying about where your life has gone and the fact that you will soon be 50.

All nighters are pulled in the form of hot flushes, sweats and suicidal mood swings. And hating your husband and your ungrateful kids. Or you are up with grand kids who you forgot agreeing to look after during a hot flush.

You may be pulling an all nighter at the RSL club playing bingo. Or you might be on a flight to Europe to do a river cruise down the Danube and cannot get comfortable because your hip hurts. Or you might be in hospital getting a new hip and cannot sleep because of the plastic mattress. Or you might be in a caravan sweating your ass off in the Kimberley’s. All nighters still exist.

If you are still with us and have not yet “gone to God” as my Aunty Pat says, you are hocked up on heart medication, or having heart surgery, or if you are like my Aunty Pat, you are in Argentina doing salsa lessons with a hot fella in their twenties. The original cougar.

You pull an all nighter because your kids have put you in one of those negligent nursing homes and you are wandering the garden at midnight because you cannot find your bed.

But here I am at 37. And I pulled an all nighter last night due to the OTHER reason. Yes, a spewy gastro kid. Now as a mother, why do WE have to deal with it! The Woogette in question came home from school and complained of not feeling well. He did not want dinner and turned white at about 6.30pm. It then started at 8pm and did not really stop until 3am. I of course phoned my mum, who suggested to “keep up the fluids”. I took this advice on board but discovered with every sip, chaos would ensue. So now I sit here typing with my eyeballs while Mr 6 is propped up in my bed watching crap on TV and hoovering Hydrolite Icypoles.

So there you have it my friend. The life cycle of the all nighters.

Please share with me an all nighter story so I do not feel so dreadful.

PS Am off to have a deep, meaningful and intimate day with Mr Fisher and Paykel in the laundry, the other lovely consequence of gastro.