You should have knowledge about knives. I should have knowledge about knives. I do have knowledge about knives, but somewhere in my brain there’s a roadblock that prevents that knowledge from guiding my behavior.
Don’t give me pointy things.
I’d planned to write all about knives and how the only time I’ve ever been close to passing out is the time I stuck a steak knife right into the webbing between my thumb and forefinger while trying to pry a milk lid off the jug. It just stuck there, sticking straight up out of my hand. The wound opened like one of those old football-shaped coin purses. I could see meaty stuff down in there. Blackness literally came at me from both sides and my hearing was muffled, but I managed to lie down before I fell down.
Or the time one of my coworkers handed me a brand new multi-tool, even opened it for me, and I still managed to slice the top layer of skin off my thumb down to the nail. It turned blue and purple and puffy and filled with puss and was pretty much the grossest thing I’ve ever seen. Docs were able to glue it back together, but my bandaged thumb was almost the size of my fist for a week.
I now firmly believe I should not be trusted with sharp objects. You should see the look in my kids’ eyes when I grab a knife from the drawer. We all possess this wisdom now.
I also should know by now that when life hands me a big old lemon, I should take it into the woods for a walk. And then throw it in the river. Well, not really, Leave No Trace and all that, but figuratively for sure.
Last week, when the universe delivered a big ole dried-up rotten lemon, devoid of all juice from its many previous squeezes, plopped one last sour drop on me, I should have told it to take a hike. Instead, I let some of the sourness seep into me, trying to turn me bitter on the inside.
Without intention I took that lemon into the woods. I felt my thighs burn and my lungs gasp and my heart pump exquisite blood through my body to get me to the top of the peak. I breathed in air that smelled like water and dirt and trees, an aroma so sweet it absorbed the sour with extra to spare. I was dazed with the beauty of yellow, purple, white, and maroon wildflowers, hillsides full of them, and remembered we can choose to see beauty. It’s all around us. I may or may not have run from a few buzzy insects that could sting me, because while we can choose beauty, we can’t always escape pain, though we try. I was muddy and sweaty with an achy knee or two by the time I emerged from the woods, but I emerged alone, the lemon lost forever.
In my late-blooming-epiphany-having middle age, I now have the conscious knowledge to pack spoiled thoughts into the woods and leave them there. No sharp objects needed.