Saturday, December 13, 2008


This morning I needed my shower...I mean not in a "needed it because I was dirty and smelly" sense, but definitely in a "needed as the salvation of my earthly being" sense.

It was one of those nights with the baby.. She puked in the bed...twice. And when she pukes like this, it amuses me how some adults call it "spit up" when babies hurl the contents of their tiny stomachs out at us. "Spit up" sounds almost sounds small and manageable and like something you'd brush off your lapel with a breezy laugh while sipping your apple-tini and chatting with your fashionable mama friends. But this was most definitely puke. The bed was awash with it.

She clearly was not feeling well. Besides the double dragon puke-fest, she generally just stayed up all night fussing and nursing and making poo messes in her pants on on the bedsheets and on her pj' get the picture. So at this point, as I write this with zero z's behind me, I'm feeling pretty close to comatose and very near the end of my good humour. Wishing I'd written this first in Word and pasted it in here so I could avail myself of spell check...

So at 8:30 this morning when I finally gave up on getting any shut eye and stumbled to the shower I was in dire need of some hot water salvation. Unfortunately, at that very moment my beloved had emerged from downstairs where he had just put in a load of puke-saturated sheets to wash...on hot. Thus, due to the limitations of our hot water heater, my steaming dose of salvation was sadly downsized to a non-commital, luke-warm drizzle.

But, for some reason, instead of giving in to despair, I started thinking:

Showers are truly divine. How many of us really appreciate the gift of our morning hot shower? Think about it.

I remember during my years on the road in Latin America, Asia and parts of Europe, a shower of any kind was a blessing...even an ice cold one (which most of them were) was welcome if you were cruddy and worn with road-rot and Tiny Bus Seat Funk (if you've ever traveled via reanimated school bus in the third world, you know what I'm talking about). But a hot shower...oh, the bliss of a hot shower! I mean, most hot showers you'd get were perilous to say the least since the water heaters in places like Laos and Honduras tend to be roughly the size and appearance of a yard sale toaster and hang precariously close to the water flow attached to the shower head with weird wires and things sticking out...But still. You would just stand there, forgetting your fear of death by electrocution for a minute or two and soaking in the rain of was heaven.

And here in the U.S. today...I mean, hell yes, our economy has tanked, the government is rife with corruption, no one can afford to go to the doctor or buy a house, but damn it, most of us has access to a hot shower, at least every once in awhile.

When my son was a baby and colicky, the shower was my one moment in each long, lonely day of endless caregiving that was just for me. Even though his dad was usually gone and I would have to strap him crying in his baby seat on the bathroom floor just outside the shower, with the curtain drawn and the magnificent hot water tumbling down around me, I could snatch, even if just for a minute at a time, small islands of peace and serenity all for myself. In those days, I meditated in the shower. I even did a sort of modified yoga in the shower. It was MY time.

And so, even though this morning's shower didn't deliver everything I had hoped for, I am grateful. I am grateful that I have this magical, curtained box in my house for my own personal use. I am grateful for hot water heaters. I am grateful to have a daddy in the house to watch the baby while I let the falling water clean away the grit and misgivings of a sleepless night. Ahhhh....the beauty of it. :-)

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