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Falling on my Butt: A new Perspective

This winter has been hard. There's so much snow and ice we can't see out our windows. Driving conditions have been dangerous, and the freezing rain has had us locked inside a few times. I don't usually complain about the weather (okay, yes I do), but I feel like this year has been particularly difficult.


In my bustling home with three energetic children, my husband and I have had our patience tested with the kids' numerous ear and throat infections, a case of lice which thankfully didn't spread to anyone else in the house, and a few cycles of stomach flu.


Amid the piles of laundry (that is, in excess of the standard piles of laundry), are my jumping ninja, pirate, and fairy princess, who despite the winter challenges are healthy in body and mind, and for this I am grateful. Every. Single. Day.


However, when the stomach flu laundry starts to pile onto the lice laundry, I kind of lose my cool. I'm tired, run-down, and overall grumpy. Sometimes, parents need to vent, even though we knew all these things would come around. So I vented to my mom (she's always sympathetic, plus she brings soup), and to my co-workers who face similar parenting challenges.


Then, last Thursday, as I was getting into the car, I slipped and fell. I never saw the patch of black ice in my mother-in-law's driveway, and like a cartoon character, I fell, head over heels, on my butt (more like on my hip, but you get the point.) Three days later, I'm still sore. But that's it. Just sore. No broken bones, barely any bruises. I was lucky, because I went DOWN. For those who know how I lack grace, this is a particularly funny visual, so I allow you to laugh.


But when I shook myself off, I realized how darn lucky I was. We're all healthy and in one piece. So, I quit my whining (mostly).


As a writer, I wanted to explore this new perspective. How can I write a piece lying down, so to speak? When you're on the ground, looking up, everything is askew, and it offers an interesting vantage point. I have fallen before (I'm quite the klutz), but the view I had of the underneath of my car, my children in their seats calling out to me through the open car door, my husband holding his hand out to me, and the mountain of snow towering above me offered a possibility for a story. Maybe.


So, here is the beginning of my next story (fiction):


My rib cage vibrated like the strings of a guitar as I lay on the ground. I fell hard. I opened my eyes. I saw my husband's scuffed boots, the metal frame and the underbelly of my truck, and my child's surprised expression through the open car door. I had fallen, but it wasn't the ground I was touching. It was the bottom.

I'm not sure what the bottom will be for this character, and I don't know if the piece will be taken any further, but I like the perspective of being on the ground, and disoriented. And now, back to my regular-scheduled laundry! #lifewithkids

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