After a post on Facebook by a friend struggling with opening a pickle jar reminded me of this post, I decided to repost it. It was a good memory in a weird way. This was originally posted on 12-14-2010.)
I had a mild psychotic episode tonight. Over a jar of pickles. Nothing is more frustrating than a jar of pickles. No, really. I love pickles. They are tasty, green and a decently healthy snack if you ignore the sodium. I like things that are green. I hate the jar pickles come in. I can open juice bottles and beers and peanut butter jars and even those god-forsaken juice pouches you have to stab the little straw into. But pickle jars annoy the hell out of me.
I mean really, the things are soaked in a brine that is more salt than liquid. In a pinch it can be used as embalming fluid. You can leave a jar of pickles in the fridge for over a year and the damn things are still edible. How fresh do they need to stay that the lids need to be clamped on quite so tightly?
I was actually doing fine with struggling against it. I had already used the knife-tapping trick and was about to bang the edge of the lid on the counter when the errant thought occurred to me. A single errant thought that sent me into a rampage.
“Chris would be handy right-about now.” Chris being Christian, my ex-husband.
No sooner had the thought floated across my brain that I had a total melt-down and a small crisis of identity soon followed. If I couldn’t open a jar of pickles by myself, how then would I support my daughter? How could I expect myself to maintain a budget and keep my daughter out of trouble and repair the car? I had spent so long in the company of someone else that I was no longer sure how to function sans that presence, useless as it may have been. I was near tears, fully in the throes of pickle-induced panic; the salty, chartreuse waves of self-doubt that threatened to overcome logic.
But threaten is all they could do. After all I was an independent strong woman. I am intuitive and ingenious and innovative and all those empowering “in-” words chronically single women employ to make themselves feel better. I have left my life of constant company and the mild comfort in that comes in not being physically alone, even if you are emotionally alone. I left in favor of freedom and overcame great obstacles like touching roach traps in my newly single life. Little things like opening a pickle jar would not defeat me.
Thirty minutes later, some very distinct curse words I’d not yet had the chance to employ, and a hammer later I sat on my kitchen floor eating a pickle spear. The southwest corner of my kitchen was dripping with pickle juice and broken glass, but I had my pickle spear, no husband needed to retrieve. It’s a small victory. But an important one.