Friday, January 11, 2013

The Kitchen Trash Can

It was the fall of 2011; our faithful rectangular hunter green lidless kitchen trash can was beyond retirement. Not only had several places on the lip broken off, cracks were beginning to develop as well compromising the overall sturdiness of the receptacle. It had been a useful and reliant trash can. I bought it over a decade ago and was finally dealing with the fact that I had to let it go. So I mustered up the courage and funds and decided to invest both in a new garbage holder. I really did spend WAY too much time and energy shopping for the item needed. I wanted something without a lid, it had to fit under the kitchen sink and of course I didn’t want to spend too much money on something that no one would see. Time for a perspective check, yes, we’re talking about approximately a $20 expenditure on something that is going to last several years. Doing the math, I think it comes out to LESS than pennies a day. Yet, I still managed to obsess about it. FINALLY, I made a decision. I purchased and brought our new trash can home! I filled it with a fresh white liner. I opened the door on the left side of the cabinet under the sink, slide it in and immediately ran into resistance. I pulled out the can, pushed it in again. It pushed back. I finally bent down and assessed it was all the stuff under the sink blocking the way. I rearranged the cleaning supplies and again attempted to put the new can in place. It still didn’t slide in. What was the deal?!?! After a bit more investigation I came to realize the garbage disposal was hanging down so low that the new trash can wouldn’t fit in the same old spot. What to do, what to do. With all that I had already gone through in order to get the new can, I was at a loss. Then it dawned on me. What if I put the trash can under the other side of the sink? Yes, the right side. Oh ya, it slipped right into place. Issue handled. Or so I thought. You see, after a decade of the same old habit, trash can on the left, getting not only myself but every member of the family to switch was certainly a process. We each had to stop and think before we acted. The habit of tossing a wrapper or scraping a plate was no longer “normal” or routine. It had changed. It’s been over a year now and I think we’ve all adjusted and adapted to the new home for the new trash can. Just like we’re all adjusting to being in recovery. Old systems of hurts, habits and hang ups weren’t working for us any longer. To be honest they were a bunch of yucky smelly garbage in and of themselves to begin with. The new trash can is a tangible daily reminder that change can happen. It takes effort. It affects others and in all honesty, at first, can come with slip ups. Easy? Not necessarily. Worth it? More than any value could ever be assigned. Recovery, it’s not a bunch of garbage. It’s letting the garbage go. Daphne, Another Changed Life- Say Yes to serve in CR Team leader

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