“It’s a beautiful day,” says hubby. “Let’s wash windows.”
“Wait, did you say windows?” said I.
“The sun is shining. All is well in the Universe. And our windows need washing. Where’s the vinegar?” He grinned an irritating grin. “ You can do the front door, but remember not to touch Annie’s window.”
As if I’d forget and wash the slobbered on, mucked up, cloudy, mess of a window pane that brings us a warm feeling every time we see it. It’s covered with a pattern that only the loving nose of a beloved beagle could tattoo on the glass as she waited for us to come home each time we left the house. She was our joy, but she’s been in heaven seven years, and her window hasn’t been cleaned since she left us.
Our kids call it the “Annie Memorial Window,” but I think of it as a reminder that life can be messy but love endures. Don says if we ever decide to sell the house we’ll worry about cleaning it up then. It will take elbow grease and some tears but it can be done.
That windowpane comes to mind sometimes when I’m working on my novel. I’ve been writing that book since NaNoWriMo 2007. Seven years ago. Started it just after Annie left us. It is a joy. But it is a cloudy, undisciplined joy. I know I should clean up the messy parts and wash away the slobber, but unfortunately I have fallen in love with my story and am reluctant to part with things that are clearly muck.
Oh, sure, I could get out the vinegar and make things crystal clear. But the murkiness has grown on me and I like the story the way it is. It’s familiar and I can tinker and play and stay comfortable. However, if I should ever get serious and decide that I would like to sell the book, it’s going to take some elbow grease and some tears to get it shiny clean and ready to show. I don’t want to have to wait for a sunny day, though, maybe I’ll tinker with it today.