Ah, the arrival of Spring seems to have brought with it some Spring Sniffles. Roo seemed a little off her game yesterday: hot, flushed, restless, and a tad heavy on the whining. Sure enough, she was reluctant to get out of bed this morning because she was feeling under the weather. Lots of sneezing, sniffling, watery eyes, a slight fever, and some lethargy thrown in for good measure.
When I was a little girl, I distinctly remember my mom bringing trays of comfort to my bedside. I can still hear her crushing ice by hand (using a skinny wand with a silver ball on one end) and adding it to freshly squeezed orange juice. This was always accompanied by toast topped with my mom's yummy strawberry jam. I would wait, snuggled under my blankets, for the sound of her footsteps coming up the stairs and down the hallway to my room. She would talk quietly and gently, stroking my forehead (which I now know is "The Mom's Way" of testing for fever). After juice and toast, she would make me some tea to sip.
And always, without fail, mom would follow all the light, nourishing snacks with a spoonful of lemon juice mixed with honey. "To coat and soothe your throat," she would tell me with a reassuring smile. There's nothing like the feeling of being completely cared for, knowing that someone you love is at your beck and call, attending to your every need and desire.
I remember laying in bed on several occasions, with a throat too sore for me to call her name. I needed an extra blanket, or more juice, or a book to read, or...something to comfort and cheer me. And somehow, my mom sensed it. Within minutes of me sending her telepathic vibes, she would indeed appear at my side, "Is there anything I can get for you?" How did she know I needed her at that precise moment? One of those special gifts bestowed on mothers, I guess!
I am so grateful to have these memories to draw on, so I can try to recreate the same safe, comforted feeling with my children when they are feeling ill. Thank goodness, we've been very fortunate thus far. I've only needed to come to the aid of a sickly Roo once or twice over the past few years. And Rascal has been spared to this point (unless you count the last 9 months of chronic "colic" --as that's made him pretty miserable most days and nights).
But today, I made up a special plate of Roo's favorites. Two of them happen to be naturally high in vitamin C, luckily. The third is something normally reserved for the end of an exciting day, when she needs some extra help settling down for sleep.
After tucking her in on the couch with pillows and a fleece blanket (When there are germs involved or the possibility of not keeping food down, I tend to lean toward easily washed items versus her quilt, which must be handwashed), she enjoyed her treats,
and I got to play nurse today. Just like my mom, I hand-crushed ice and poured orange juice (although, not freshly squeezed I'm afraid). I stroked her forehead (yep, she was definitely on the warm side), and I spoke in hushed, loving tones. We cuddled and I smothered her with kisses as we listened to the enchanting vignettes of Jim Weiss. I even let her watch too many cartoons in a row.
I admit, I had a hard time ignoring the laundry pile and the various household tasks calling my name. This was especially true when the kids and I had been up for 8 hours and my little patient refused to take a nap, despite my insistence that naps killed germs and nasties. Hopefully, Rascal will not succumb to whatever Roo is suffering from. Otherwise, I'll be the one suffering with two sick littles to tend! :)
By bedtime tonight, she was feeling and looking much better. It could have been the vitamin C or the homeopathic drops. But I think, what helped her most, was a liberal dose of good, old-fashioned TLC!