Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Just a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down

Months ago we had a night with a glitch in our usual bedtime routine. We'd finished potty and toothbrushing and last drink. We'd read two books. We'd turned out the lights and laid down together. We'd had our two minutes' snuggle, which, let's be clear, includes the two minute, the one minute, the last minute, the last one minute, the short short minute and the last last minute.

So we'd had all six minutes of our two minutes' snuggle and I was partly out of the room when I was called back.

Mommy! I have hiccups!

Oh, the cruelty of timing. I sat with her. I brought her a glass of water. I rubbed her back. I had her hold her breath and I had her try to sneeze. I tickled her. I shushed her. I distracted her via a long boring story about my day.

I still have hiccups.

A spoonful of peanut butter always cures me but she doesn't like peanut butter. It was getting later and later and she was beginning to have some what-if-my-hiccups-never-ever-end anxiety. I started suggesting other viscous pantry items. "Honey?" Ewww. I don't like honey! I hesitated to say what I said next, because I knew her response would be too enthusiastic and I feared exposing her to a chronic case of everynighthiccupsitis.

"Maple syrup?"

Okay, Mommy! I'll eat maple syrup now if you tell me I need to. I'll try it!

Thankfully, it worked. And she finally went to sleep.

Even more thankfully she did not have hiccups again. Until tonight.

"Stay in bed," I told her. I'll be back. I went to the kitchen and filled one of those turkey-baster-style medicine droppers with a mouthful of maple syrup and I went back up. I pushed open her door, and inhaled sharply in surprise. There she was standing, just inside the doorway, clearly out of bed and rearranging the animals at the end of her bed. Her movement had startled me and in turn, my inhalation scared her. She shrieked. And sputtered.

And the hiccups stopped.

"Get back in bed, love," I told her. She obliged, and opened her eyes the widest and turned them and her outstretched open hands to me.

Mama, I was thinking. I think, maybe, yes I think so -- I think I should still drink the maple syrup. You know. For just in case. Pin It