Friday, June 12, 2009

Writing Exercise: A Smell That Recalls a Memory

This post was inspired by Kim's Thank Goodness IFs.

The story I stared earlier in the week called "Wedding Day" is still churning around in my brain and I'm not ready to post more yet. I'll save it for next week's fiction. Happy Friday, and thanks Kim for the prompt.

Prompt: A smell that recalls a memory

This morning while doing laundry I remembered something silly that I had long forgotten. As I was folding my husband's tee shirts I was struck by a 12 year old memory of me taking a bag of his clothing to the laundromat for him while we were dating. I volunteered to do this chore for him cheerfully at that time. (It seems that cupid had poisoned me badly.) When the dryer stopped I opened the door and pulled out one of his cotton shirts. I held it over my face and closed my eyes, breathing in the smell of him for a few seconds. When I took the shirt off my face a grand-fatherly man who had been sitting in a corner, reading a T.V. Guide, was staring at me grinning so hard that I blushed. I looked down at the white and green Linoleum floor and concentrated on folding.

Today I remembered my initial reaction to my husband's smell. In reality it was Irish Spring soap mixed with musty sports bag, but in my nostrils it was Obsession for Men. This experience of recognizing his natural scent for the first time was really a wonder for me because I do not have an acute sense of smell. This memory made me laugh out loud in front of Norman Whiskers the cat as I looked at a pile of tee shirts. Today marks a week before our 10th wedding anniversary. When you get used to being married you sometimes forget the ridiculous things you did during the earliest part of your relationship.

That memory led to another: The time Milk Man took a shower in my parents' basement after a baseball game while we were dating. I think I wanted to die because he was in a shower at my house. It was like Elvis (or the singer from The Fray for you modern groupies) was using the same shower as I use. (It's a girl thing.) When he went in the bathroom to change I scooted down the basement stairs and stuck my head into that shower to get a whiff of him. That's when I knew I had it bad (infatuation).

These feelings have not faded, on the contrary, they bolster my deep appreciation for my spouse today. Even after a few rounds on the roller coaster of life, I'm that same silly school girl when it comes to Milk Man. When I get into bed at night, I often think about how many times I said goodnight in freezing weather while we were dating, how hard it was to leave him. Just sleeping next to Milk Man ( I said sleeping bloggers!) is something I appreciate so much because for several years before we married I went home and slept alone. This decision of going home every night to separate places for our entire courtship gives back something to me now; a gift of deep gratitude. For all my teasing, AND his for that matter, the sacrifice has preserved that initial feeling of infatuation to some extent and it has strengthened us as a couple.


Kimberly said...

You captured perfectly in words that 'feeling' of when a person is falling in love! I love this post!!! I completely understand about the smell thing; when my hubby deploys he makes a Hubby Pillow for me by putting a worn white T-shirt on top of his pillow and pulling a pair of worn boxers under the pillow, so I still get to sleep beside his scent :)

Elizabeth Kathryn Gerold-Miller said...

This is very descriptive and so so sweet!

Trudy said...

This is wonderful! Visiting from Kim's blog...I love how descriptive this is and yes, there is definitely something about that masculine scent! I think it's better to not really break it down too much, LOL!

Koala Bear Writer said...

Very cute. :) Totally shows the infatuation, as you say. Great way to "show not tell"!!!

Putz said...

you are so much younger my dear, my wie would have a clothes pin on her nose to avoid smelling the was

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