LM, Episode 195, 5/28/20, Wash the Dishes 

Yesterday we were examining how, in spite of the fact that most of the moments of our life are munday, stress is caused by having thoughts about things that have happened in the past or may happen in the future. When you bring yourself back to this moment, much of your stress naturally melts away.

Thich Nhat Hanh says, “When you’re doing the dishes, do the dishes.”  He says don’t think about things from the past or what you need to do in the future, just do the dishes.  Not only will it reduce your stress, you will find being engaged in the mundane activity of washing the dishes to be more pleasant.  

For years, every Sunday we had lunch at Twyla’s mom’s house, which was one the best meal of the week. Emma Lou was a great cook and it always included a coconut cream pie.. In fact, five days before she died, we were having Sunday lunch at her house.  

Part of the routine was me helping her do the dishes.  Today, when I’m washing dishes, I find myself reminiscing about those times.  Sometimes I’m happy remembering how much I enjoyed her company.  Sometimes I am saddened at the fact we have been deprived of her company for over twenty years.  I often have to bring myself back to just washing tonight’s dishes.     

One Sunday she sent the remaining coconut cream pie home with us.  That night I planned on eating it for supper until Twyla says, “I want part of that too.”

I go, “But it’s just one piece of pie.”

Twyla says, “Kent, it there is a 90 degree angle in it, it’s more than one piece of pie.”

I call Emma Lou to settle this.  She says, “Kent, share the pie with Twyla tonight and tomorrow I’ll make you another coconut cream pie.”

Hanging up the phone, Twyla asks, “What did Mom say.”

“She apologized for you being so spoiled, but told me to share it with you.”

Bring yourself back to this moment, wear your mask, wash your hands, and always remember laughter matters.