Thursday, August 30, 2012

Bruises {A Bigger Picture Moment}

The cold apples numb my hands as I peel them over the sink. 

Strips of red and pink and gold fall away, and the perfect whiteness of apple pulp appears.  I'm using these for applesauce, to be stirred with cinnamon: a invitation for autumn.  This wholesome task might be in reparation for the raised voices from this morning. For the angry feelings towards a little girl who refused to budge. (Well, I wasn't budging, either.)

I rinse an apple under clear water.  Spare peels slip down among puddles.  But there, on the white flesh, is a deep brown spot.  A bruise, softening and breaking the sugars down into something dark and melted.  Pulpy.  My first instinct is to gouge it away with my knife.  It's not pretty; it's not fresh; it's not perfect. 

It's ugly.

I push the apple under the stream of water again.  Coldness rushes over my hands again.  I cannot feel the bruise under my fingertips. 

But it will cook just the sameIt will mash just the same.  It will sweeten just the same.

Across the room, Landon is using a pan lid as drum, cymbal, and hat.  He growls when the noise surprises him.  He grunts when the hat falls sideways.  He looks to me and lifts his arms, like a raised flag: here sits the boy, the one who makes all the noise.  His sister follows the racket, brings a wooden spoon, adds volume and rhythm.  They smile at each other and my heart flips over.

I chop apples -- bruised and mushed, white and crisp -- into a pot.  The whole is enough to absorb a bit of forgettable imperfection.  The juices are made more bold by some added flaws.  It will all cook down, I tell myself.  It will all come together in the end. 

It will all cook down, I chant, watching the little ones.  It will all cook down.

She meets my eyes and shoots me a thumbs-up while her brother squeals.  I think I'm forgiven for being the mean mom, the bruised one, leaking sweetness from ugly blemishes.  I think I'm forgiven for not being fresh and white under my grumpy morning.  It will all come together in the end. 

Every Thursday, we come together to share the harvest of intentional living by capturing a glimpse of the Bigger Picture through a simple moment. Join the Bigger Picture Community at Melissa's place today! Reflect upon something simple — or simply magical — that’s resonated with you this week, then share it with us!


  1. Poignant and so insightful. This is a true simple moment that opened the curtain to the bigger picture! ...and, I'm going to try a crock pot applesauce recipe this weekend...just went on my list!

  2. It will all cook down... I love that :)

  3. Yes, yes, yes! I have three huge buckets of apples sitting in my kitchen just waiting to be turned into sauce! I will be thinking of this moment as I peel and chop and cook them down - bruises and all. It really all does come together in the end, doesn't it?

  4. What a lovely piece! So much: forgiveness, compassion, patience, grace, optimism, and letting go...all rolled up in gorgeous metaphor. Love it!

  5. WOW!!! Such a wonderfully sweet metaphor, and yes it will all cook down, and all will be forgiven. Because everyone has flaws, it's our imperfections that make us learn, grow and be unique. Hugs friend, and I hope your applesauce and day was sweet.


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