How My Everything Drawer Brings Me Hope…

April 9, 2019 Krista Hager No comments exist

My Everything Drawer Brain

My brain is an everything drawer. In my conundrum of a brain, thoughts seep into each other, sometimes burying my original focus so deep I find myself walking into one room and completely forgetting why I was there. My actions tangle in simultaneous to-do’s. Yesterday, I literally scooped up a cup of dog food and poured it into my frying pan with the ground beef. Yep. Some call it mom brain, some call it ADHD, and I just call it a part of who I am. It drives me crazy sometimes. And other times, I kind of love it—My everything drawer brain. Because this is when meaningful mundane moments find me. Because that’s kind of my wheelhouse—beautiful, simple, overlapping lessons on repeat. 

Given my life is an everything drawer, my house naturally follows suit. So when clearing out my kitchen everything drawers yesterday I found something recently forgotten—my HOPE rock. After several moves, even across states, and almost a decade in my pocket, there it was. There was a time I considered it my lucky charm. Partly because I seemed to never completely lose it. And I lose stuff—my car, my car keys, my rings, my phone, my money, my mind (you know… the usual). Sure, this rock would disappear for a time, but we would always seem to find each other time and time again.

As I etched my fingertips over the familiar cracks spelling “H-O-P-E,” I stalled in stillness to let a little light in.

This rock was actually a gift from a treasured therapy client. Well sort of a gift. In fact, I gave this HOPE rock to this client at one point, along with a strength and courage rock to mark his incredible courage and strength he always brought to the table, and the hope we constantly fought to find for him in our sessions together. Most days after a session, I found myself driving home deep in trance, unable to fathom the walls he climbed daily to be the incredible person he naturally was. An orphan in China, blind, and survivor of long term trauma, he moved to the United States just two years before I met him, only twelve at the time. My brain could barely wrap around that type of strength and courage.

Meeting these type of people gave me hope. Meeting him gave me hope. Hope for him, and honestly, hope for myself as well. And as I gave him the three rocks, he gave me HOPE back.

“So you always remember me, and so I can give you back some of the hope you gave me.”

I just smiled. Professional boundaries prevented me from saying all the things I wish I could have said in that moment, so instead I just said “thank you so much; I always will.”

What I would have said, tearfully (had I been able to), would of equated to ramblings resembling, “I am a complete wreck and could never overcome one hundredth of what you have already survived in your young age. I am a fraud I tell you, and you are a better person than I will ever be.”

So there I was standing in my kitchen beside my everything drawer, holding this rock—with its perpetual persistence and impeccable timing. As I rolled the smooth rock, tracing each letter of HOPE with my fingertips, the reel of my last decade began to play back. The highs and lows, recent struggles, recent triumphs, being lost and found, and then a little lost again, and then a little found again. So goes the story of my life.

My daughter awoke from her nap simultaneously to find me meditatively circling the rock from hand to hand.

“Mom what are you doing with my rock?”

“You’re rock?” I teasingly prodded.

The truth is, I almost threw the rock out by mistake because my young daughter collects rocks and tries to keep EVERY freaking rock she finds. In fact, we would have no less than a thousand rocks in our home right now if I kept them all. So I hold on to these “treasures” for a bit. They later wander their way into my everything drawers, and eventually find their way back to our yard during my weekly purges.

But this rock struck a familiar chord in its stone grey chameleon existence, so upon second glance, I flipped the rock over and smiled as I saw HOPE once again. There it was. Chipped, but not broken.

Playfully giggling in reply because of course she thinks this is her rock, EVERY rock is her rock right.

“Honey, this isn’t your rock. This is a special rock that I call my HOPE rock because it says Hope on it.”

“I know mommy you already told me. You gave it to me next year a very long time ago (my daughter is really bad at timeframes). I put it with my special treasures in the car.” Awe the car, my other everything drawer that only gets cleaned out when I take it for a rare detailing.

Is my toddler’s memory really better than mine? I wonder silently. Yes probably. Moving on.

“Huh. I really don’t remember that sweetie.”

“Yeah when I went to the hospital to get poked next year.”

Vague memories speckle back as I my mind attempts to color by numbers a faded memory. {I was looking for some paper work in my glove compartment when the rock fell out. Again surprised by its timely appearance I immediately knew its impending purpose. Addy was terrified and very sick. We were on the way to the hospital. I gave her the rock, and told her about its significance—that it too would serve its special magic now on her.} 

“Oh well here you go. You keep it sweetie,” I smiled.

“No mom, you have it. It’s a very special treasure, but I have very many special treasures. See all my hope rocks!” She points to a collection of no less then 100 “hope” rocks in a large bucket on our playroom shelf, collected during a recent family lake house excursion.

Her HOPE rocks. I grinned. She collects HOPE rocks. How did I not see it before? 

Hope is a rock. It is everywhere even when I think all is lost. Hope is my everything drawer. My daughter collects Hope. Hope comes in many shapes and sizes. It can seethe into dire circumstances, fill cracks, erupt, be coveted, and even lay the foundation of the uninhibited sea. But mostly, hope is the gift that gives. Hold on to Hope. Give Hope. Return Hope.

HOPE Rocks! (I couldn’t help myself.)