The Gift of Washing Soap Dishes

Yesterday, I posted a story about country life, growing food and chickens.

Although soaping can be all consuming, we are all multifaceted. Like over sniffing fragrance oil coffee beans cleanse the palate, so does a new story. A new story can offer a moment to dream. While dreaming with our eyes open we make ourselves available to those inspired ideas floating, just out of reach, all around. Using the coffee beans in the same way, we unencumbered our minds to fully experience the next scent.

It occurred to me while washing soap dishes today that a large chunk of my time is cleaning: cleaning up after soap, getting ready for soaping, standing in front of the sink, and if I run out of glass ware, scrubbing the oil from plastic. My nemesis – plastic.

To outsiders, non-soapers, (yes, there are those) washing dishes seems boring. As a child I hate, HATED, washing dishes. It wasn’t the chore I hated, it was why I had to wash dishes. This scene played out after church on Sunday. If my parents wanted to spend time alone my mater would find some innocuous reason to punish me. The correction was to wash all the dishes from our Sunday meal and every single item of silverware. She would dump the drawer, pull a chair to the sink, and insist I stay there until all were clean, dried and put away. The other consideration was if I didn’t wash everything quickly and the water grew cold, (as I was known for dawdling by blowing bubbles) I was not allowed to add fresh hot water.

This was a lose/lose situation. If there were spots on the silverware, the drawer would be dumped again. I spent many, many Sundays standing on that chair. Thank the powers that be, this parental unit left our home by the time I was eleven.

It has taking me years to learn to love washing dishes. Soaping has brought this gift to me. I made myself available to this gift by not allowing anything, ANYTHING that might hinder my love of soap making to stop me. Even the stories of my life, the stories I still tell myself and my resistance to letting those stories disappear, to be replaced by new stories.

This, I hope for you too, that road blocks disappear and evaporate, but not before they leave you a lovely gift.


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