I knew the imaginative title would hook you.
I knew tackling something you take so much for granted would pique your interest.
I knew I’d have to come up with a third “I knew” statement or your reading “happy” would slide off the dirt road into the ditch and you’d stay buried to the mental axles until I did. I know you see what I did there. Cool what you can do with words. Right?
Put your “think” down. Now, run through the normal steps you take each morning as you jump into the shower. Really, go ahead. I’ll wait.
- water temp
- check Facebook one more time
- put left foot in, remember exhaust fan’s not on, get floor wet while stepping back out to flip the switch on
- get back in shower, reminding self where the wet footprint is so you don’t step in it again
- hair first or lather up bod before wash-rinse-repeat? Your call.
- bar soap or body soap and scrunge doolie? Again, your call.
- sequence (I’ll let your “think” stick its nose inside the shower curtain. Sequence of bathing is whatever you’re used to. Yet you have to think about it, don’t you, because by now it’s automatic.
- luxurious rinsing off wi—FROZEN or HAIR SINGED OFF—with lovely warm water. Uh-hunh. You know what just happened. I don’t need to say a word.
- water off, with you muttering to yourself as you dry off using, again, your habitual sequence. Surely they could hear the water running. . .
- Standing carefully away from the little footprint-shaped pool of water, you finish drying off and dress, sitting down on the commode to put on your warm socks. Trying to be cool by donning socks while balancing on one leg isn’t worth the awkwardness of hopping like an emu with ADHD and finally crashing your upper thigh painfully into the counter edge. Of course, the bruising will be covered up, but still–
- Muttering some more about the heathen who turned on the water, you plant your right foot squarely in the pool of water you meant to sop up with your used towel.
That chain of events sound about right, Soggy Sock?
Taking a shower is one of those ‘autopilot’ type chores you just do without thinking. Right?
Unless there are mitigating factors, that is.
- being so weakened the only thing fueling the effort is your disgust at your pasty-white skin and ‘hospital’ hair, and wanting above all else to feel clean again.
- gingerly unwrapping the 14-inch-wide elastic ‘girdle’ velcroed around your torso, opening to light and air – and your view in the mirror – of the huge stay-sutured scar from sternum to pubis, packed and padded and taped until your profile indicates you’re either pregnant or the result of someone drawing a camel from memory and making a slight miscalculation regarding the hump’s location.
- pulling out yards of Saran Wrap from the Economy-sized box you keep in the bathroom and wrapping yourself from armpits to waist until you look like a huge QuikTrip burrito assembled by blind, deaf aliens.
- easy. . . easy, now. Carefully, you raise both arms above your head to wash your—Ooh, BABY! Nothing in the history of Forever has felt SO good as washing that stringy yuck that used to be trainable and you could comb it and let me just scrub it a little more WHOA-A-A. . . Did I mention the weakness thing? Well, along with that was the balance issues. Fortunately, the shower stall is narrow enough that I could catch myself before falling. Somewhat painful, yes. But much less so than collapsing in the tub and eviscerating what was left of my intestinal tract into the tub. That can ruin your whole morning.
- scrubbed as much as strength and stamina allow, it all happens in reverse. . .
By then, fatigue demands serious mattress time. Since food is always available via IV and catheter, I could eat and sleep at the same time.
No. I don’t recommend this as a way to learn appreciation for your shower stall.
Take joy in what blessings God has placed in your hands!
I do recommend learning to appreciate living. Breathing. Eating. Singing. Walking. Driving. Mowing. Yes, even shoveling the occasional snow.
All those things could easily be denied you.
Quickly, suddenly your life as you know it can permanently change.
Celebrate what you have! Take joy in what blessings God has placed in your hands! Maintain a growing sense of gratitude for what lies before you in His will and design for the rest of your life!
And next time you’re zipping through that same-ol’ same-ol’ shower? Slow down, revel in it, and breathe a prayer of thanks that no one needs to look for the Saran Wrap in your bathroom.
© D. Dean Boone, November 2015