Whenever I got sick as a child, my mother would immediately put me on a strict regime of SICK CONFINEMENT.
Basically I spent all day in bed.
But she would also put me on a SICK DIET.
Breakfast was hot oats and a bit of honey.
Snack was dry cracker biscuits and water.
Lunch was watery, plain rice porridge and Bovril.
Another snack was sweet barley soup.
Dinner was watery, plain rice porridge and Bovril.
She did it every time I was sick. And oh how I hated it. I hated all those foods. And I still hate them! Every single one of them.
Even now, the smell of oats and honey makes me gag. I can’t eat dry cracker biscuits without feeling ill. And barley drink? Bleargh! Talk about childhood conditioning.
And what about now? With my own sick children?
The other day my 5.5yo woke up with a dizzy head and I held him back from school. We spent the day at home and it was like the good old days with little guy – doing a bit of craft, playing lego, sitting in the garden, eating snacks in front of the TV.
But when lunch came along, I was completely torn.
Part of me believes that the only proper cure food is rice porridge with Bovril.
But the other part of me knows he won’t die if I give him a sandwich.
So what did I do?
HE ate a sandwich. While I had some rice porridge.
It’s been one of the few times that I’ve been stumped by my own cultural mish-mash.