Day 183: Miso: a Super Food, Health Food, a Seasoning, and a Comfort Food

Miso soup is a comfort on cold winter mornings. It becomes a rescue remedy for me when at holiday times too many acidic foods and drinks have been consumed–sugary/meaty foods and for me only a couple glasses of wine.  More and more I see on cooking shows that miso is used as a condiment and seasoning of other foods which I have not explored.

However, on the following occasion I clearly experienced the healing power of miso soup—and I think it was an intense healing concoction by an English friend who had studied Macrobiotics. I was WAY OFF the stress scale after:

Receiving and accepting an invitation on November 13, 1983 to fulfill my “destiny” by starting a “center” of Inner Light Consciousness.  It was a year’s assignment.

So, in 3.5 weeks’ time I closed down my apartment in New Market, Virginia; sold my old car named Humphry Toyota Carolla,  packed up my apartment, left my friends and life style behind, moved my 7 year old special needs daughter, Laurie, out of her secure and wonderful Shenandoah Valley school, began preparations to get her established in a Steiner English boarding school. (That took some researching without an internet at that time.) I flew TWA for The Netherlands on December 9 with Laurie, 2 large suitcases, two medium size duffle bags and a box containing Laurie’s Christmas present– a doll house that had been assembled and painted the day before the Benelux letter asking for an ILC teacher arrived in  Virginia Mid-November. The doll house rooms were stuffed with her favorite small toys, audio tapes, and Raggedy Ann and Andy.

We arrived December 10 to a very unclear welcome (a letter or call from The Fellowship of Inner Light had not confirmed that I was the answer to their request I discovered much later). My hosts wondered why I was there and didn’t admit that until months later when I returned from teaching in Austral-Asia.

Within a few days, my plans for teaching in Australia and New Zealand for 3 months was solidified BUT I was informed the enrollment was small and the committee then didn’t think they could meet the salary that had been promised earlier.

We took the ferry from The Netherlands to England to visit friends, peruse the Steiner boarding school and seek Laurie’s enrollment. We stayed with one friend who provided the transportation to the school. My heart wrenched to think of Laurie in a residential school in a foreign country while I was literally half way around the world and below the equator in Austral-Asia. They would accept her but I needed my salary to pay for the school.

Then we stayed in London with another friend getting ready to take another ferry to the island of Jersey to spend Christmas Eve and several days with Lilly and Mathew Howard-Houston and Nerida Melsmith from Australia.  AND I was so stressed and so tired that I could not lift the suitcases off from a bed at 9 pm before we were to catch the train to the ferry to the island at 9 in the morning! What was I to do?  I was exhausted and aching everywhere. I felt like I was getting the flu.

My hostess, Andrea, made a concoction she called “miso soup”. I know it had miso, garlic, soy sauce, ginger, kuzu, kombu and ome boshi plums in it.  And I don’t know what else since this was 35 years ago and I was “out of it”.  I woke up refreshed, strong enough to carry two large suitcases and push the box with my feet. I then found out that miso soup was medicinal. I wish I had the exact recipe.

We spent several wonderful relaxing Christmas days with Lilly and Mathew Howard-Houston on Jersey with Nerida Melsmith and her daughter from Australia. We took the two ferry’s back to The Netherlands.

I prayed and trusted and ended up getting on the flight alone to Australia New Year’s day 1984 to teach for 3 months with $75 in my pocket. When I arrived the retreat people were secretive and then announced under pressure that my salary could not be met. I had to cancel Laurie’s English boarding school and depend on the love and care of two different couples and her wonderful nanny, Angela to make things work in my absence. Later the money did come through and I could pay people back. Laurie was well taken care of, went to a Dutch school and began her many years of swimming and speaking Dutch.

Yes, and feeling like you are fulfilling your life’s mission even with hard ships does add to the desire to be a Super-Ager.

And miso is always in my refrigerator ready for comfort and for healing. There are many healing qualities of miso listed on the internet. Please feel free to explore.

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