Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Chicken Soup and Honey

"I'll have my tea now," from the apparently sound asleep little boy I was checking up on. He'd gone to bed with a fever and conked out before finishing his mug of tea. None of this was going through my mind just now, tea? Huh? "Child, it's three in the morning, how about water?"

"O.K., but I'm hungry and I'm going to throw up."

"I'll get the tea." Resigned and more than half groggy, I leave my little guy IN HIS BED and go down to fetch a cup of chamomile, because chamomile is good for upset tummies. When I return, child is in the same position, and he matter-of-factly lets me know he has barfed, his term, not mine.

It has been a hard week; norovirus, better known as "stomach flu", influenza, three kids down, and they have been taking turns being ill with one or another, or both at the same time. Yesterday, it was at the point where the decision was made not to make lunch, on a Sunday...radical around here. There was not an able-body among the three kids who were home. Their positions ranged from curled on a sofa under a bathrobe to face down on a bean bag with another bean bag on top for warmth. My husband, after making pancakes for all of these unhungry little beasties, decided a bike ride was in order.

I sat and ate something, still in my sweats, because I had begun working on taxes early in the morning in bed, and had simply not transitioned to full wakefulness, while Gael had a bowl of chicken soup, then Valentine decided she would have a bowl of soup too. Charles was still sprawled over the love seat in the sun. They ate slowly, but I could see that the heat of the soup was bringing back a little color in their cheeks. "Charles; a mug of soup, sweetie?" "Hmm, what, huh? Yes, please, I think. If it's already warm." "It is no problem to warm it up again." "No, never mind, don't trouble yourself." "It is already done, come over!" And there we were, a family. We were rather a motley crew, but beginning to talk, and argue and tease...and heal again. 

Checking in: one week later. I did not even have a minute to hit "publish," when Duncan was also hit with the flu, and then my husband. Goodness. One of the first things I did was buy a giant jug; three or four lbs. of local honey, to put in their tea day and night. Two days ago, I returned to the whole foods store for another jug; we were out. Whether it is from my licking the spoon after stirring in honey for everyone else, or, as Thierry claims, out of sheer stubbornness, I have not been as ill as everyone else.  There is fresh bread baking and soup's on for lunch, with honey for dessert.

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