I am beginning to think there’s an evil group of monsters who design packaging so difficult to open that one needs a knife, hammer, and bolt cutter to get to the contents.

In the last couple of weeks, I’ve tried to open a bottle of salad dressing, a label-maker, and a package of salad mix. The salad dressing bottle was encased in a shroud of plastic that seemed impenetrable. I used a fingernail, then a knife before decided I’d eat my salad dry. I tried again the next day, hoping that overnight the shroud had somehow become looser. Out came the knife again. After ten minutes of digging, the plastic was loosened enough to pry it off. What a surprise to see yet another deterrent to using the product – under the lid sat a second piece of plastic. At least this one came off with the tip of a sharp knife. Why????

The label-maker sat on my desk for weeks before I attempted to tackle the gargantuan task of opening it. I’d been the unfortunate receiver of a deep cut from the thick plastic packaging of different products through the years. I knew it waited for more of my blood.

Who decides which items need to be packaged in something that can withstand a nuclear holocaust? Will someone post-apocalypse need to organize their files using a cheap label maker? Doubtful, yet there it is.

I put a box cutter to good use. And there was no blood. This time.

Even the plastic clamshell of mixed baby greens is a challenge. “Zip open,” the directions tell me. “Then pull up at the corner tab to open.” Sure. After stabbing the top with a knife to pry off the lid.

All of this to say I’ve been thinking about my mom a lot lately. I’ve heard it said women eventually become like our mothers. Although my mom lived into her nineties and I’m much, much younger, I’ve realized how difficult some things were for her. Macular degeneration took most of her eyesight, and arthritis weakened her grip. She was frustrated at having to wait for someone to help her find things she dropped on the floor or to open a container.

The struggle is real.

Sometimes I must wait for Mike to get home so he can open a jar or cut open a package.

Philippians 4:13 says, “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.”

Except open a jar of salad dressing.

Jane S. Daly is the author of two nonfiction books and five novels. You can connect with her on her website www.JaneSDaly.com

Jane is addicted to coffee, purple pens, and her husband, not necessarily in that order. A self-proclaimed introvert, she enjoys the solitude of riding shotgun in Rigsby, her 37-foot motor home. But when they pull into a new campground, her favorite thing is to make new friends and find hangouts featuring local musicians. Her fantasy involves writing lyrics for country music songs and hearing them played on the radio. In the meantime, she’ll stick to writing novels. And seeing as much of the country as possible.