After Shout Out, OxyClean, bleach and a toothbrush, frayed at the collar though it may always now be, it was hot and blinding white once again and now lavender scented as I returned it back to the wooden peg next to the kiva fireplace in my bedroom.
There it was when I awoke this morning. Like an Andrew Wyeth still life, fresh and ceremonial and personal against the polished adobe plaster.
I greeted it like an old purified friend, ready to bundle me up for the blurry toddle to the coffee pot. I went out to the covered portico that runs the length of the back of the house connecting the bedroom French doors to another set at the end of my kitchen. The coyote pups were yipping; darting through the miles of scrubby pinion trees feeling their spring, tumbling through the underbrush and forcing the wild hares to scramble for cover in all directions.
I threw a frittata together while waiting for the coffee maker to deliver that last telltale sputter. I watered the herbs that line the window at the end of the harvest table, silhouetted and fragrant against the purple Sangre de Cristo Mountains in the distance. In the far distance a woman in a weathered denim skirt, tan boots, woven brimmed hat with a stick and a big dog gallivanting ahead, led her horse through the fresh mustard sage. I’ve seen her before. She’s like every woman tells me they secretly want to be…ripe in self-assurance, rich with authenticity, aged with natural willowy grace.
As the morning haze lifted on both the horizon and me, I thought of how often in the pursuit of passion, influence, and acquisitions, that the humble, quiet, simple, ego-less soul just can’t penetrate the noise. It crouches there holding the very fulfillment we want the most, waiting for us while we continue searching for its gifts in the approval and verification from others outside us.
All it wants is for us to pray the prayer of gratitude, stop for a moment and acknowledge it while attending the simple things like cleanliness, order, and harmony. In the silent caretaking of little things comes the greatest, deepest gestures that feed us.
While I sat there with my little bowl of bleach and my toothbrush, my mind wondered inward. This was not the chore I thought I had postponed but a moment between me, the soul and my nimble fingers. While I whisked the eggs and cut the herbs I’ve been keeping alive through winter, I could smell their oils on my hand begin to whet my appetite and remind me of inherent senses I can so easily take for granted—shoving food in my mouth, running through airports.
As I return my robe to its hook, its lavender scent now faded…I leave you with this…
The best times of our lives may be smaller than we think. They’re the minutes we remember accurately because we were grateful for them in the moments as they happened.