Yesterday I pulled out the ugly, corroded silver dishware from my china hutch: a plate and large serving tray from my husband’s mother and a gravy boat and saucer from my mother. Horribly tarnished and gray, they weren’t much to look at. And although I’ve always known that there is something more, deep underneath the tarnished layer of nasty, sadly, I’ve never used any of them.
Of course, it’s understandable that we haven’t used the silver from my mother-in-law. It was passed down to my husband only a few months ago when his mother died. But the gravy boat, on the other hand, the one that’s been in my family for four generations, the one that was passed down to me by my mother ten years ago when she died, should have had more attention by now. I’ve never used it. Ever. It’s just sat there on a shelf in the hutch.
As I pulled out these prized, yet dull and stained dishes, I reached for the silver polish too. I mean, they deserve it, especially this year. The dishes deserve to be more than just a tarnished thing of the past. I sat on my back deck, clouds overhead. I reached for a rag, scooped up some polish and began to work on one piece at a time, one corner at a time, and one detail at a time. I paid special attention to the areas that had been neglected for so long. Little by little, I could see what began to reveal itself as my reflection. And as the sun began to break through the clouds, my reflection became clearer and the brilliance of something special began to show itself. It shined with a clarity that I hadn’t imagined. It was beautiful. The kind of Beautiful that has purpose and pride.
So as the New Year’s season comes upon us and the thought of revisions and revival arise, I’m reminded that those stories from the past that look ugly and tarnished, may very well need some extra polish and scrubbing, especially in those areas of fine detail. And who knows, perhaps something stunning will emerge with purpose and pride, just as the fine silver dishes will tonight as they present the most sparkly Christmas Eve dinner ever.
Merry Christmas, happy holidays, and happy revising to you all.