Small dude shows cool head as mum burns

QT's Mummy Columnist Clare Evans of Goodna.
QT's Mummy Columnist Clare Evans of Goodna. David Nielsen
LITTLE LEGEND: Fire extinguisher or fire blanket? is the question as things heat up in the kitchen.
LITTLE LEGEND: Fire extinguisher or fire blanket? is the question as things heat up in the kitchen. THINK STOCK

FOLLOWING in the great Australian tradition of spinning a yarn, I have been known to exaggerate occasionally in the quest for a ripper tale.

But I can say without question, and without hyperbole that I am the proudest mum in the universe this week, because my small dude did something so brave and so clever, and kept his cool in an incredibly stressful situation, and almost certainly helped me avoid serious injury.

Because this week, while cooking, my shirt and hair caught fire, and he helped put me out.

It was just one of those stupid, one second accidents that could have been an absolute disaster.

I reached up to get a spice jar out of the cupboard while I was cooking, and as I was doing it I thought that I was doing something a bit dumb, that I was a bit close to the flame.

I was trying to save myself a grand total of 3 seconds in a full on busy day.

As I was still thinking that, and adding some chilli to the pot, I realised I could smell something burning. And as I looked down, I realised that something was my t-shirt.

It was only in hindsight I remembered the message that's been drummed into us for years: stop, drop and roll.

But at that moment in time, the last thing on my mind was lying down on the shirt that was on fire.

All I could think about was getting it off my body. I was holding it out as far as I could. I screamed "I'm on fire" and the kids came running in.

They had two very different reactions; my poor She-Devil was terrified, she screamed and went and hid in a corner.

But somehow, although he was frightened, the Boy was able to ask me "Fire extinguisher or fire blanket?"

I honestly had no idea, all I knew was that I now had more fire than t-shirt and I was running out of time to get it off. The flames were starting to lick my skin and I was really starting to panic.

I told him to grab the fire blanket and ran outside.

Once on the concrete, I held my breath, hoped for the best and pulled my t-shirt over my head. Which is when my hair caught fire. As I stupidly but instinctively put that out with my hand, the Boy covered my still flaming shirt with the fire blanket and put the fire out.

What a legend.

I'm always proud of my kids, even when they're driving me bonkers, but I have to say that was one of those moments that really makes your heart swell.

To know what to do, to be able to remember it under duress, and all at 8 years old.

And then to rub my back as I dissolved into tears and say to me, "it's all right mum, you're safe".

No exaggeration necessary.

Proudest, and luckiest, mum ever right here.


Hair's to come off, but what's under it?

WHILE I was incredibly lucky to escape with no serious burns or injury, I did lose a fair whack of hair when it caught alight.

It looks a little bit like I'm attempting to recapture Year 9 and the savage undercut that was inexplicably popular; although nothing like the girl in my grade who had Bart Simpson shaved into hers.

That was hardcore.

I've lost about one-third of my hair almost back to the scalp.

But when life gives you lemons, you make lemon meringue pie.

Or something. So I'm joining the Leukaemia Foundation's World's Greatest Shave this weekend, and clippering the lot.

Modern Dad is not that impressed.

He seems to have forgotten how many ridiculous facial hair 'styles' I have been seen in public with him sporting.

My only real concern is that I'm going to discover that I have some really weird shaped head, like a Conehead, or someone from the Pointed Village.

I mean, I think it's nice and round when I have hair on it, but there's really only one way to tell.

And there's no short way back to covering a pointy melon.

Do I need to start stockpiling hats? I'll let you know next week.

Topics:  clare evans editors picks modern mum opinion

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