My little boy loved milk. Scott would not take a bottle with water or juice, it had to be milk. He would toddle around the house with a bottle always hanging from his lips. It was his comfort. It was something he could always count on. He soon graduated to sippy-cups, but again, they were always filled with milk. This wasn’t a problem until our family took a vacation with other neighborhood families to the island of Jamaica when he was three years old. He was the youngest of the children in our group, the next youngest child was seven at the time. The trip to Jamaica was very long and although I had put his sippy-cups of milk into a small cooler with an ice pack, there came a time when the milk just wasn’t cold anymore. After hours of traveling by van to the airport followed by two plane trips, we finally arrived in Jamaica. But then we had to take a long bus ride across the island to get to our resort. The bus was warm, the air conditioning was pitiful and everyone was tired. Many of us were also dealing with some motion sickness by now. Scott was exhausted and so was I, he pleaded with me for some milk. All he wanted was to comfort himself. But the milk was many hours old by now and not cold at all. He put the cup to his lips and made an odd face. Then he tried again . . . and again. Finally he looked at me and said “What’s wrong with my milk?” I explained to him that it was warm because we were in Jamaica and it had taken us a long time to get there. He stopped drinking milk for a while after that. For months following that trip, he would look at me wearily when I handed him a cup of milk and he would ask, “Is that Jamaica milk?” But finally he moved passed that and was able to enjoy his milk once again.
That is, until a couple of years later when he was five. I became seriously ill and was in the hospital for a few weeks. My mother-in-law was at my house taking care of my children and Scott developed what I will simply call a “bathroom issue.” My mother-in-law’s cure for this was to give him prune juice. He didn’t like to drink any juice, but he certainly didn’t like prune juice. In her attempt to help him with his little problem, she thought she would put some prune juice into his milk. The boy became traumatized! His one comfort was gone once again, tainted by prune juice. When I finally came home from the hospital, the little guy fearfully told me his harrowing tale. I told him not to worry, I wouldn’t put prune juice in his milk. He sighed with relief.
To this day he is still my milk baby. I can’t help but smile when I see him with a full glass of milk sitting at the table.
http://www.theresadodaro.com Author of The Tin Box Trilogy