Monday, May 12, 2008

A lavender candle sits on the night stand by our bed. It's at least eight years old and there is barely anything left of it. David laughs at me for keeping it, but each time I smell it I am transported to our first apartment. It was a tiny apartment built into a garage with no air condition and no insulation. There was a small kitchen, an even smaller bathroom, a living room which we used as an office, and a bedroom. We spent the first week there cleaning out what the old tenants had left behind. There were beer cans and cigarette buts everywhere. Were it not for the lovely yard lined with rose bushes and complete with a patio with a built in grill and a large tree with a hammock, I might not have made it through the three months we lived there. California summers can be hotter than you might imagine, and with no air it was miserable. During the day I took showers to cool off and at night we slept with ice packs under our necks. Yes, it was really that hot! Our refrigerator was one of those small hotel room refrigerators. There was just enough room for milk and eggs. Everything else stayed in the refrigerator of the lady who owned the place. It was part of the deal David made when he moved out of the room he rented. She was nice enough in the beginning, but perhaps the heat got to her as well. She would leave for weeks at a time leaving us with no way to get to the food we had stored in her refrigerator or any access to the washer and dryer. Each day that we stayed there, we searched for an apartment. What we didn't notice is that what we considered the in-between-time ended up being the time we learned how to live together. We learned the subtle and sometimes not so subtle give and take that is a relationship. In those few months, I learned how to live without my mom and twin sister, and the ups and downs of life outside of my comfort zone. They were three short months, but they taught me so much. The scent of a little purple candle is all it takes to remind me of so much.

8 comments:

Kristen said...

It's funny how certain smells can take you back, isn't it? It's great that you can look back on that time and feel pretty good about it when it could have been a horrid summer.

Old Folks Blog said...

Hi Sandra,
I am getting ready for bed but thought I would say good night to you,David and Hayden also Erin,I see that all is going well,as I read your blog,Just stay in the mood you are in now and all will be fine.
You are always in my prayers.
Love much,The Oldfolk.

Kelli said...

I love this. How sweet that you can remember all this from the scent of a candle. Funny how that works, isn't it? Sort of like hearing the song you listened to on a special date or with special friends and being transported back to that time whenever you hear it.

I didn't know you had a twin. That's really awesome!

McMom said...

It is neat how a smell or an object can bring a flood of memories. My husbands leather jacket does that. Very sweet!!

Denise said...

Isn't it wonderful how the Father God teaches us lessons of life without us even knowing that He is watching...... Keep that candle.... It will always bring you back to the love that brought you and David together and the love that will keep you......

E. Michelle said...

me, too. For me, tuberose takes me to the convent i stayed at in Africa. or was a spiritual retreat place? both?

cv said...

That's a wonderful story. You should take a photo of your candle so you have it even if the candle is gone one day. You'll still smell it's memory in your mind.

Memory smells.....they are powerful.

aola said...

It's a good thing you were so in love :)