by Malena Lott
Once upon a time, four days ago to be exact, I was having a very pre-Cinderella moment, cleaning the cluttered playroom/office upstairs. The reason for my cleaningfest was because a camera crew would be here the next day to shoot a photo for a magazine article on "how color enhances a room." My playroom/office is apple green and the style is fun and contemporary with some vintage mod chairs thrown in for good measure. I got the chair pictured herein at a used office store. Three of them for $6 each. They were real office chairs from the 1960s. The Ugly Dolls are supplied by my daughter. I assured her they prefer to be in my cool chairs than at the bottom of her stuffed animal pile in her room.
I'll be honest. I'm feeling pretty cocky about the clean-up in that moment. I'm down to one pile of papers (mostly trash) and my toddler, TinyHulk as I like to call him, is spinning in my office chair waiting for me to finish so I can tuck him in - again. Then it happens. A crash. The chair stops spinning. My eyes dart to the ground where my laptop is in a triangle on the carpeted floor.
"My computer!" His spinning chair had clipped the computer, sending it to the floor. I pick it up, sit in the chair and stair incredulously at the screen. Cracked. The bottom right corner is black with a crack line from the top left corner like a strike on a bowling game. Red, green and yellow lines cover the screen, making it mighty tough to read the screen.
"What's wrong with your computer?" TinyHulk asks.
"It's broken. You broke it," I whimper, tears starting to fall down my face. I feel stupid for crying, but the laptop is like my fourth child. It goes everywhere with me and it's the reason I get so much writing done throughout the day and still manage to keep an eye on my busy toddler.
"Mom, let's send it to Santa."
"Because he'll know how to fix it."
"No, I don't think it can be fixed."
The little guy's face is white with shame. "Oh. I'm going to bed now." He knows what he's done because he broke our new plasma TV last year by throwing a toy at it. This time it was most definitely an accident, but still. He races out of the room. A tiny miracle that he would put himself to bed, but he doesn't. I hear big steps coming up the stairs. My husband.
"Did he really break your computer?" The tears streaming down my face answer him.
Thing is, a few moments later I was over it. It's not cancer, I think. It's better than the hard drive crashing, which happened to me last fall. And I'd rather my laptop crack it's skull than my toddler.
Isn't that what happens in life? Things are going along really well. I was feeling that On Top of The World feeling. I knew I'd be more imaginative and focused in a de-cluttered room. And I am. I just had to adjust and bring up the big Mac from downstairs to do so.
The biggest lesson I learned (besides the obvious: don't leave my laptop near a moving object) is that we all have our No Matter What goals. We'll do anything - absolutely anything - to make them happen. Since my laptop cracked, I've written 6,000 words on my WIP. I'm writing this blog post on it right now. I'm not letting any setback, big or small, get in the way of my writing. And you shouldn't either.
P.S. Happy Obama Day!