Cures for Cranky Children

Saturday, August 16, 2008

As I hope is to be expected of a two-year-old, Benjamin has at various points during our trip been cranky.  This has resulted in him receiving various traditional remedies to soothe/cure a cranky child.

Today, it got him a double dose.  First, he was hit with the spitting cure, whereby someone takes a mouthful of water or mezcal and spits it on the patient.  I think water may be the prescribed cure for crankiness, but I’m not sure which he got.  I will have to investigate this practice further, which, as an intellectual exercise, sounds interesting.  If the result was supposed to be a calmer child, it didn’t seem to work.  Benjamin only threw a bigger fit as far as I could hear.

Later, he got the egg [sitta] treatment, which I understand is specifically for young children/babies.  A fresh egg is taken and rubbed around the kid’s body to draw out whatever is bothering him or her.  It is said that if you crack open the egg afterward in a glass of water, you might be able to see black spots or the like, reflecting whatever was drawn out, but I haven’t actually seen anyone crack open the egg to demonstrate.  In fact, I wasn’t quite sure what happened to the egg afterward, but Margarita tells me that it is thrown out.

I’m not sure this treatment is effective either.  Today, it didn’t seem to be, but it might have been when we were here before when he was still a baby.  Who knows, it might be oddly soothing.  Either way, I don’t see any particular harm in the practice other than it may delay whatever the child’s preferred method of soothing is, which in Benjamin’s case is still nursing.  Otherwise, I don’t see a reason to object.


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