Prose: The Dishwasher


When did life become about loading and unloading a dishwasher?

We cook. We plate. We eat. We rinse. We stack. We add soap, click the door shut, push some buttons. It runs. It washes. It dries. It signals when it’s done. We open. We put everything back in its place. And there it is. That feeling of satisfaction from emptying the load. Letting it go. Ahhhh …. We’re free now. We can breathe. Everything is in order. And then …

We cook. We plate. We eat. We rinse. We stack. And we do everything all bloody over again. And somehow, that satisfaction begins to dwindle. No longer do we have that breath of release, where the universe is as calm and as stable as it should be. No, that bastard buzzing signal stabs us in our guts, tenses up our shoulders. It is all going too fast.

And the freedom is gone, taken over by the monotony of a full dishwasher, dirty or clean no matter. Full, just like our bellies, just like our lists, just like our life filled up to the brim with dishes, responsibilities, to-dos, wishes, dreams, tears, laughter, crazy laughter … until it all falls apart. Even the machine can’t take anymore.

And we wonder if getting it fixed is worth it. Just leave it broken. Numb. One day we’ll have an empty space there. Freedom, again, unless of course we fill it with a cabinet of stuff or shelves or dust. And we go on with life washing dishes by hand. And there’s something therapeutic about doing it ourselves, we realize. Not relying on machines, technology, which is supposed to make our lives easier, which we pay extra for in therapy.

And there it is again, freedom. Bliss. And full stories told … through the precious wrinkles in our hands.

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