You know how sometimes when a container of soap is almost empty some people (not me, definitely not me) will unscrew the top, fill it with water, shake it up, and pretend it’s still soap?
That’s kind of what it feels like when a story I’m writing isn’t quite working.
It all looks pretty cool – there’s liquid in the bottom and the container is full of bubbles. But, truth is, it’s mostly just water and air. Just words strung together on a page. And when I pump out the alleged soap, there’s nothing to hold on to – it just slides between my fingers and disappears down the drain. There’s no substance. It doesn’t do anything.
Also, people will notice. Because it moves around like water. Sure, it’s still tinted pink, but soap shouldn’t swish around like that. And, I mean, it’s not like soap is this big investment or anything – it’s more the principle of it. It’s easier to water down the soap on the counter than load up 2 kids in the car, run to the store, endure a public temper tantrum, and buy a ninety-seven-cent container of soap.
But eventually I hypothetically do. And then I’m hypothetically so irritated with myself – like, why couldn’t I have just bought a new container a few days ago when the soap actually ran out? Really, I wasn’t fooling anyone.
Even my 4-year-old noticed. Hypothetically. She said, “Hey, what’s wrong with the soap?”
And I said, “Look, it’s got bubbles!”
And she said, “Um, I can’t wash my hands.”
So I said, “Go use the soap upstairs.”
And she gave me that look that’s like, Ugh, I can’t believe this is my life.
And then my 2-year-old said, “Pink water!”
And I said, “No it’s soap.”
But I couldn’t fool him either. Also, I couldn’t get the chocolate off his hands.
I’m not sure if there’s a point to this. Other than a public service announcement to replace the soap before your walls get covered with chocolate.
Oh, and don’t be scared to start over. It’s probably for the best.