comfort

I imagine that some children are entirely cared for. They have new organic cotton clothes, always combed hair, needs met, toenails clipped, new books to read, art projects at the ready, woolens for the winter, fresh baked bread, a newly scrubbed toilet in which to pee, kale chips… well, it seems that I could go on and on.

My children are not this well-cared for. At least, not always. When they were tiny, I thought of everything that touched their skin and went into their little bodies. Now, more often than not, they are the kids with stained clothes, mismatched socks (to be fair, they prefer them that way), a bit of chocolate smudged on the face. But there are other moments, and something in my body entirely relaxes. I can’t entirely identify the feeling, but I know that it comes when one of the girls get out of the bath scrubbed clean, and I grab her before she gets dressed and rub lavender lotion on wintery dry skin. I feel it when a pair of shoes is too small, and right then and there we have the money and the time to go to the shoe store and buy a new pair. There is the aforementioned cutting of nails, combing of hair. There is the rare occurrence of buying these expensive and wonderful underwear (luckily they last forever), knowing that they fit so well and the girlies love them.

I guess if I were talking about myself, I would call it self-care.

But because these entirely separate and complex little people are not me, but still walk around carrying small but substantial chunks of my heart in their hands, I’m going to call it comfort.

Rosie has had a hard time recovering from that tummy bug that hit her last month. There were a few relapses, but now there’s just occasional complaint and tummy holding, a pain that slows her down. I brought her to my friend, Emily, who is a magical acupuncturist, and Rosie loved laying on Emily’s table. Every night, she asks me to rub her tummy like Emily did, and I do. It gives her comfort, and it gives me comfort, too.

Emily also told me that peach pit tea was just the thing for Rosie’s tummy. It turns out that Emily’s mother, Jane, made peach pit tea for Emily and her sister, and it helped just about any ailment that came to visit over the course of their childhood.

This past summer, in some fit of hot and steamy August peach canning, Janet handed me a bowl of peach pits, still sticky from the flesh that had so recently clung to them.

“Bring these home and give them a quick boil and a gentle scrub. Then dry them in a low oven for an hour or so. In the winter, you can make tea.”

I did what she told me to. (I usually do, and it leads me to good places.) But then I had a mason jar filled with dried peach pits, and I wasn’t sure exactly what I should wait for before I pulled them out. Was it for sore throats? Or circulation? Just enjoyment? I meant to ask her all Fall. But then, as it turned out, I had peach pits at the ready when Emily told me that this was how I could give Rosie comfort. And when I finally mentioned those peach pits to Janet again, she said that it was Emily’s mother, Jane, who taught her about peach pit tea in the first place.

Every night, the girls have been asking for their peach pit tea, and my jar is almost empty. I cannot make any claims as to health benefits of this or that, but I can say that Rosie’s tummy is better, and that when I fill her cup with this sweet pink tea, she breaths it in and I see her settle right into it. Joey and I have been drinking it too. I can only describe it as a warm comfort tonic. It smells faintly of peaches and almonds, and one pot of tea takes care of us all.

 

 

 


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16 Responses to comfort

  1. alwayshungry says:

    I totally agree that caring for others that we love is a form of selfcare. Thanks for the idea of peach pit tea but I guess I’ll have to wait till next summer to collect some! I’m glad Rosie is feeling better!

  2. Barbara says:

    Hmm…
    I could absolutely be wrong about this, but I believe peach pits contain a very small amount of a form of cyanide, which is the reason the tea also has a light almond flavor…

    You would therefore have to consume a large amount of the pits themselves to be affected – and obviously your acupuncturist was never harmed by it. Still, thought you might want to know so you can research it yourself!

    • alana says:

      Barbara, it’s true- peach pits (like apple seeds) do contain a minute amount of cyanide, but 1. You would have to eat a whole lot of peach pits to get enough cyanide in your system to cause an issue, and 2. Even if you did eat all of those pits, you have to actually eat the ground up seeds inside the pit to access the cyanide. The cyanide is only released when the ground up seeds pass through the digestive tract (as opposed to the whole pit steeping in water). Thanks for the question! (I have to add the disclaimer here that I’m not a doctor or a scientist. My research on this one comes from the internet and from herbalists I know.)

  3. Oh my, I love everything about this! It reminds me of M.F.K. Fisher in all sorts of good ways. Wishing I had some peach pits — or even some fragrant peach ginger tea.

  4. Connie says:

    Very sweet post. When they are little we do make sure they are protected more. Glad your honey is better. I love your posts and pictures everytime I get them.

  5. Kristen says:

    We have many peach pits saved from our tree. If you need/want more, please let me know and I can drop some by some time. We keep them around for sore throats and colds, but the kids haven’t been big fans of drinking it this year. In a roundabout way I learned about it from Emily’s mom too. (Good to see you guys this evening!)

  6. Allie says:

    I’m so glad Rosie is feeling better! Emily is indeed magical, thank you for sending me her way. Now I have to get my hands on some peach pits so I can try this tea….

  7. Sarah says:

    I love those underwear too.
    And I cannot wait until peaches come this year. I will have a big old jar myself, for my little people and me.
    love, as always, from the Denver Messinas

  8. Stephanie says:

    I’ve never heard of peach pit tea, but it sounds like just the thing for winter bugs. I also love the way it’s so alliterative!

    Now, I am longing for August (instead of the enjoying the bulbs poking up in our mild February weather), so I can dry some peach pits and make this tea!

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  11. ted says:

    hi alana…..i found your blog while looking for a peach pit tea recipe….and it felt warm and homey….every so often i am fortunate enough to happen upon a site like yours in this world of the internet that gives me pause to let go of my online criticisms and just say ” thank you “…..wow! i am out of breath from that sentence!!

    best regards
    ted

  12. Adrienne says:

    Just happened on this blog. Looking for info about the cyanide issue I came upon. I have used peach pits occasionally for the last 3 years. They are the thing for boils and abscesses. Drinking the tea.
    Also, I had an experience with long term cysts in my pallate sinus area that explodes after a quart of the tea.

  13. Adrienne says:

    Let me correct a typo. I meant 30 years.

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