There was a time when I tried to grow all sorts of plants in my condo in Minneapolis, but a green thumb I am not, so eventually, they all died. The thing is, when they finally shriveled up and looked all brown and lifeless, I still would not throw them away. Why, you ask? Because I don't like to touch dead things. My boyfriend, at the time, would come over and throw them away for me. All the while, he would be shaking his head.
So it is with the dead things in the fridge. Today, the hubster and I were snowed in. As Eric was making lunch, he started looking through the refrigerator and said, "Hey, there's leftover Chinese in here!" Silence. Then, "Ew. I'm pretty sure it's not supposed to look like that." At that point, the dam broke. We started throwing things straight into the trash or into the garbage disposal. Much like a good movie that makes you sob, it was a sort of purging of the soul. And the timing couldn't have been better.
Earlier in the morning, we had had a fairly serious spat. Things of the past were brought up, making us realize that they had never really died, they had just laid dormant. Waiting. Harshly truthful words were spoken, hot and salty tears were shed, but then there was understanding.
Just as the dead things in the fridge had been festering and allowed to survive in the fridge, so had resentment and selfishness in our minds and hearts. The purging of the dead things was like taking all that muck and sending them into the abyss where it would be trucked away with the rest of the garbage, never to be seen again.
And I realized that it was much easier to touch the dead things when he was also doing it alongside.