My mom lives by herself. Like many of us, she's one of those people who buys food with really good intentions of eating it... and then, because there's only one of her, just doesn't end up consuming it before the expiration date. Only... she never cleans those things out.
One of the first things I do when we visit is go through her fridge and toss all the things that are expired.
So that we don't die.
Usually, this is milk... yogurt... strange things in tupperware boxes.
But then there was the year of the pickles.
This might have been the first year that I did a major clean-up of my mom's food supply. Like usual, there was the usual yogurt. Salad dressings that were past their prime. And the pickles.
Friends, this was in 2006. The pickles? Oh, those had expired in 1996!! She'd had the same pickles in her fridge for 12 years! Now, I counted back.. and as I sat there in front of the fridge surrounded by my 6-year-old twins, I realized that these were probably pickles that she bought for my high school graduation open house! These were some old pickles. Cucumbers from the harvest of 1962. She moved HOUSES with them.
I guess we all have our own pickles, don't we? Things that we should get rid of, things that just aren't for us anymore. Its not that they're bad things... they're just a jar of pickles that we've had in the fridge for too long.
But somehow, it's hard to get rid of those things. They don't bring us the joy that they once did... but once... they did. And getting rid of them feels like saying those memories and those past joys are invalid. But the truth is that those pickles just don't taste the way they did when they were fresh. And every time you try one, you become just a little more unhappy with pickles in general.
Maybe you have something that you need to let go. Maybe you need to just be okay with throwing out the jar of pickles.