I open a new bottle of shower gel this morning and squeeze some in my hand and immediately I am carried away to another time and place. I am back in North Florida at my grandmother’s home on a warm summer morning. It was Dove soap that gave me wings for time travel.
Just the fragrance of that soap brought back a ton of happy memories of my Saraberg. That was what we called her. She was my mom’s mother and she went to heaven several years ago. I miss her. She always had a brand new bar of Dove soap in her shower when I visited and the fresh clean scent reminds me of her.
Has that ever happened to you – where you instantly time travel to another time and another place? It’s fascinating when that happens, isn’t it?
Why do smells bring back such vivid memories? Well, they say (and I am not really sure who “they” are) that our sense of smell is tightly connected to our ability to remember. Your smeller – the olfactory nerve – is located very close to the part of the brain that deals with emotional experience and memory.
I guess that’s why when I smell Dove, I think of Saraberg. And, when I smell Ivory soap, I think of my dad’s mother, Mama who is also in Heaven.
This morning I’m extra thankful that God gave us not just one sense – not just sight – but five senses to let us engage with the world around us. Even the sense of smell – as funny as it may seem – lets us take in the beauty God’s creation.
It is when we slow down and breathe in the moment that we truly experience the beauty of right now. My hope and prayer for us today is that we be mindful and take in all that is around us. Up for the challenge too?
Question: How about you? What scents trigger sweet memories for you?