Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Corelle, Not China Kind of Life


I love china, and the feeling of sipping a cup of tea from a dainty cup, with a saucer, a couple short bread cookies on the bread or salad plate next to my cup. The highlight of taking a cruise, in addition to the places, is the formal multi course servings, each one served up on delicate patterned or bone colored china.  Neither of these scenarios are my daily life. I have china, a set from my mom and dad as a wedding gift. It gets used very infrequently because I usually serve more casual fair when people are over and my stoneware suits the menu and mood better. My stoneware says, join us, you're one of the family, where as my china says you're a special guest. When I use it though, I treat it with special care, washing and drying by hand, putting it back in the china hutch where it is stored. No stack drying or dishwasher use. 

When we were first married and the kids were very young, we had an eight piece set of Corelle plates, bowls, and mugs. If you know anything about Corelle, you know you can use and abuse it, bumping it against stove tops when serving, and knocking it about when doing dishes and little to no harm will occur. It seems while Corelle can stand up to the daily stuff of life, it holds and keeps every stress line, invisible chip, and minor damage that was done to it until the day when the impact is so great, it doesn't just break, it shatters. 

People's lives can resemble the difference in dishware. I have family and friends that resemble China. I know when they are having bad and vulnerable days and need to be treated with special care. They are the ones when in times of stress like a death in the family, a job loss, or any major transition, others rally around to give support. Most of us are like stoneware I believe. We go about our days, casually navigating ups and downs, able to hold heavy items, but yet, will break if hit to hard, and gladly take some reinforcements of super glue to help put the pieces back together. I worry about the Corelle people. They take on more and more, in their jobs in their families, with their friends. They do not ask for help when needed, developing little cracks here and there. Warning signs may get ignored like headaches and sleepless nights even though the day makes them weary. They will take on a heavier load than others, feeling like if they don't, their stack of dishes will topple over. 

I was a Corelle Person. Then, when my plate dropped, it shattered and could not be put back together. I needed an entire new set of dishes. The interesting thing about blogs, is meeting people and reading their stories. I'm learning a lot of people are Corelle people, some on the verge of shattering, others having gone through it and now trying to replace the shards with stoneware. A few have emerged into  and embraced a role as china people-owning their vulnerability and using writing as part of their therapy and healing. Regardless, all dishware needs a certain degree of handling with care. The alternative is plastic, and who wants a cupboard full of that? 

10 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Thanks a lot. Guess what I was doing while reading my blog roll? Drinking my first cup of the day, and my mind started thinking on this topic.

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  2. I have a very expensive china set given to me by my father, when my mom died. It was hers and she used it all the time. I have never used it.
    I have a corelle set. I love it! When one of the bowls broke, I simply went to Wal Mart & got a replacement. I didn't buy a whole new set. Many outlets have a corelle or a corning store. I love sitting down at the table and using my corelle set. They can be lovely at times.

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    1. There are some pretty patterns. Too bad in life, we can't just buy replacements for the pieces that break. Thanks for reading.

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  3. I was a Corelle person as well, and shattered about 2.5 years ago. Lots of glue needed and thankfully was available so am piecing myself back together. Great post!

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    1. Hard that we sometimes need to hit the literal breaking point before we ask for or accept help, or get rid of the things in life causing the damage. I'm happy your pieces are coming back together.

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  4. VERY interesting analogy! wow.

    But you know what makes Corelle shatter like that? Microwaves.
    When they first came out, my dad went to see them at the local Shopko. The salesman told him all the features and encouraged my dad to drop a bowl on the cement floor. It shattered. The salesman gave him another. It shattered. Then Dad grabbed another, wondering how many flukes there were. It shattered. We still bought them...
    Today, I have lots of corelle ware for daily use and china for birthdays and special events.
    As for me as a person... I'm not sure which one I am, but I've got lots of chips and a few wrinkles/cracks.

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    1. Interesting-microwaves cause the cracks and shatters? Now I'll need to wrap some sort of analogy in about a microwave, but nothing is coming to mind. While I'm not thrilled with the wrinkles and cracks, they're signs of a lived life, right, and that's a good thing.

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  5. A really great post! I think I'm a Corelle person too, and the shattering usually takes a physical rather than an emotional form. Despite the physical shattering I find that people still try to heap their stuff onto me :(

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    1. I'm the opposite-I shatter emotionally-tears, anger, sadness. Then make myself physically ill. I'm my worst sabotager though to my energy, but slowly recognizing my warning signs before the chips become breaks.

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