band-aid is cure-all

The thing I remember about parenting young children was the absolute belief in the simplest things.
When one of my now grown sons was a child, Band-Aid could fix everything. He needed Band-Aids for every cut, scrape or scratch. I kept a box handy to soothe his tears and regularly peeled open Band-Aid for his knees, legs and arms. At the height of his belief in Band-Aids he came to me, “My ear hurts. It needs a Band-Aid.”
“You want a Band-Aid for your earache?”
“Uh-huh.” he sniffed.
I didn’t think it would do any good. He was sure it would.
I shrugged, pulled a Band-Aid out of the box, peeled it open and taped it across his ear. He touched the Band-Aid, stopped crying, smiled and went to play. The magic of Band-Aids had soothed his earache.
That cure was not included in the book I found written by a pragmatic physician who advocated self-treatment before heading to the clinic. The book had a list of questions to ask to determine when to try a home remedy and when to head for the doctor’s office.
The book began with a chapter of advise for dealing with common problems. I was intrigued to read that one way to relieve insect bites was to soak the irritation in the hottest water one could stand for 10-15 minutes. The moist heat triggers the body to release a natural anti-histamine that relieves the itch for a few hours.
When my then young son complained about his summer crop of insect bites on his feet and ankles, I told him to try soaking his feet in hot water. He tried and it worked. After that I would occasionally find him sitting on the edge of the tub soaking his feet in hot water relieving the itch of his current crop of bites.
I think it was the same pragmatic doctor who advised breathing in a brown paper bag to get rid of hiccups. So when my youngest son whined about his annoying hiccups I said, “Well you could try putting a brown paper sack over your head and see if that works.”
He headed for our stash of brown paper bags from the grocery stores. I don’t have as many now that my groceries are sacked in plastic unless I ask for paper. He opened the sack and put t over his head. The bag fell nearly to his waist. He walked around, humming to himself under that brown paper sack waiting for his hiccups to subside.
His little sister saw him and decided she needed to have her hiccups – which I could not hear- cured as well. She got her own brown paper bag and put it over her head. Together two pairs of feet, sticking out from underneath brown paper bags marched around the dining room table waiting for their hiccups to go away.
They were so satisfied with the results that for years afterward my munchkins never complained about hiccups, they crabbed a brown paper bag, pulled it down over their heads and waited for their hiccups to disappear.
They have long since grownup and out of such simple solutions, but the amusing memories remain to remind me of how simple it all used to be.