Years ago, when technology wasn’t what it is today, I remember writing an entire scene and losing it through the magic of a computer glitch. The whole thing was gone. I was miserable. I wanted to kick myself for not saving it as I went, but even at the time of writing it, the words were flowing out so fast and so well I didn’t take the chance on slowing down, even to save it.
I have since learned to save as I go, regardless of the roll I’m on. I’ve also taught myself, especially through the daily writing of this blog project, that I can stop and restart writing at any time and get right back into the groove, so to speak. Practice and practice certainly help.
But, as I hate to do things twice, I was kicking myself for losing that old scene that was so majestic, so perfect in its diction and its humor. Finally–and it took time–I set out to rewrite the whole scene. It turned out pretty well. And after that, somehow, through the magic of technology that is far beyond my capabilities, I found a copy of the original on the printer. Comparing the two, I realized how far superior the rewrite was to the original. I never would have known it, but there it was, plain as day.
The thing about spilled milk is that we cry over it because it was perfectly good milk. But sometimes we lament things that are gone and done, and really, they weren’t a waste at all, and they were never very good.
Some things need to go to make room for something better that’s approaching. Note here the word approaching; not here yet, perhaps not even on the horizon, but regardless, riding toward us without our knowing. Other situations, quite simply, are better off in our rearview mirror, getting smaller and smaller as we move forward. Because forward we will go.
Of course, in the rare instance that the milk spills out in the shape of a silly, flying ghost, there’s nothing left to do but stop and laugh, and laugh well.
Make room for the great things that are coming, because they’re out there, mid-approach.
~ Jody Brown is the author of Upside Down Kingdom, and is a multi-blogger, poet, and traveler. To learn more about her current writing projects, or for ways to donate toward their completion, see JodyBrown.com/writing.