Inspired by Neil Gaiman’s The Sweeper of Dreams. What if everything that happens like that had some kind of driving force behind it, a physical representation of the events that happen in our lives, the emotions, the small moments?
The Thing That Makes You Lose Things
Don’t blame yourself anymore. When you lose your keys. Your left sock. The bracelet from your 7th grade boyfriend. The wax-figure elephant figurine your mother-in-law gave you. Ok – blame yourself for that one, maybe.
It is by no fault of our own that these items go missing. It is the thing that makes us lose things. It is the thing that makes us lose things at the most inopportune times and run frantically throughout the house overturning couch pillows and venturing through enormous dust bunnies under the fridge only to later find the things when you no longer need them in an inexplicable location like the cheese drawer or in the watering can or – cough cough the elephant wax figure your mother in law gave you – in the trash. The thing has a rather long title. In short we most of the time say, “Where the hell is it?” instead.
It’s a shy creature. It lives in the corners of our eyes. We see it in the quiet times when we’re not looking for it. it’s the flash that we think we see disappear around the corner. When it’s not being careful, sometimes we do a double take. What was that? We shake our heads. Probably nothing. We’re seeing things. Except the things that it’s sneaked in to steal from underneath our noses. But by the time we notice what’s missing, the thing has already melted away like morning mist in the light of the afternoon. We have never really seen it. No one has.
The things that go missing are not things we think about. Our aloe-flavor chapstick and orange coffee tumbler and wine bottle opener are not noticed until they are gone. They are only the small things, the little blessings. It would never steal your car or break into your house to take your TV. That’s a job for its older brother. No one likes the older brother.
No, it’s just the little things. The ones that only until you lose them do you even notice you had them.
And that is why the thing takes them. It gives them back when we realize hey, this is important to me. I hope I never lose it again. So we can look at the things we have and the things we have lost and found – and find that we have more than we ever thought. So we can say thank you, thing that makes us lose thing, but where the hell are my keys?