The Serving Spoon

Often help can come from the most unlikely of places. You can’t plan for every situation but yet the universe often has a way of giving you exactly what you need when you need it – like a serving spoon.

I’d like to say last night was a night like any other. But it wasn’t.

Since our house fell apart last week, we have been living out of a suitcase in emergency accommodation – it could have broken me but I am trying to rise to the challenge and am determined not to let it get me down.

We carefully planned that my daughter would share with me and my son would take the second room with my husband. My kids do NOT share space with each other well. We are not that family! Besides, a working mothers guilt has left me feeling recently like I needed some extra time with my girl. But it wasn’t long into the night before she decided to move to the couch as it was a hot night and she wanted the air conditioning.

At 3.40am I awoke to a sound. I knew that sound. I’d heard it before. Not often and certainly not often from my daughter. I listened. She was quietly approaching the room and then she said it …….

“Mum, I vomited EVERYWHERE”

I got up and headed to the lounge room. I didn’t want to go but some strange maternal instinct propelled me forward even though my head was screaming stop. My legs weren’t listening.

And then I saw it. A steaming pile of rustic carrot soup. And she was right. It was everywhere.

I looked. I looked away. I walked to the kitchen. I walked back. I walked to the bathroom. I walked back. I went to get my husband who surely would be getting up to help after hearing all of the commotion. But no, his sleep bubble is sound proof during the small hours.

“Sweetheart” I whispered to my daughter in despair. “I can’t clean it up. I don’t have anything. No paper towels, no disinfectant, no actual towels (that don’t belong to Quest) no sponges or mops. I don’t know what to do”

We both stared. Ground zero was enormous but the splatter was ten times bigger. The fall out has hit all four corners of the room.

Then I smiled as a realised that I must be dreaming. I pinched myself. But it hurt and slowly I realised there was no escaping what had to happen.

“Mum” She said

“Shhh, I’m thinking”

“But Mum, I think there’s a way”

I looked up. My hand covering my mouth from the shock of the situation – and the smell.

“Mum, You could always use a spoon”

What a RIDICULOUS idea …. but it might just work.

So as I’m there on my hands and knees ladling spew stew into a plastic shopping bag (they are still good for something right?) I realise that at every turn in life you should be grateful.

Because when you don’t have a kitchen, you still have a home.

When no longer have a home, you still have your family.

And if a family member temporarily feels unwell and redecorates the floor in an orange hue, you can always find a spoon.

And for that, I am grateful.

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