I’ve had the pleasure of hosting my grandmother and great-grandmother over the last few days and there is definitely something about our “modern” generation that has lost touch of the essential remedies of natural herbs and plant leaves.
We live in a world where there is a prescription or over-the-counter drug for almost everything. But have you ever asked yourself what people back in the day did when most of these drugs did not exist? How did they deal with toothaches, stomach pains, diarrhea, and regular cuts, sprains and swelling? Indigenous people had something for everything! And I’m not even talking about Curanderas or witches that claimed to remove “el chamuco” from your sinful soul, which to this day, is still widely used and practiced across many cultures around the world.
I am not arguing that herbal remedies should substitute modern medicine or that they are even more effective. However, we cannot completely dismiss this ancient realm of medicine as possible and inexpensive solutions to our modern illnesses (both psychological and physical–which some will argue is the same).
Why would I think about this when there is a recession to deal with and all my money to spend? Well, yesterday morning my grandmas were shuffling through my kitchen looking for tea, but not just any kind of tea. Before I could ask what kind of tea they were looking for, they both turned to me and said, “Mijo, ahorita venimos…” (“My dearest and most precious loving child, we’ll be right back…”) Before I knew it, they came back with leaves from ordinary trees and plants that I’m sure were at some point peeing stalls for the neighborhood dogs…shoot, even for me during late night emergencies after a late Friday and Saturday night of studying and drinking lots of healthy juice and somehow locking myself out of the house 🙂
The next minute, my great-grandmother hands me a hot cup of tea. Now if there’s anything about Mexican culture that can bite you in the ass, it’s saying “no” when you’re offered something to eat or drink, and the older they are the less of an option you have. So I drank it like a champ and immediately felt a boost of energy and alertness. To be honest, I don’t know what the hell I put in my body, and the outcome of drinking that tea cannot be a self-fulfilling prophesy effect because I was expecting the worst (fam, don’t tell my grandma!). But if my great-grandmother has been putting it in her tea for 80+ years and she’s still standing strong, then I think I will continue to drink it. More about this later…