When Vacuums Fly

I’m having a hard time writing lately.

I sit down with my iPad, but everything I type feels really whiny or self-indulgent (it’s all about meeeeeeee!) and I just stop because seriously, how annoying.

I’m not sure where to draw the line between honest portrayals of my family and sounding like I’m harping on the hard things. How much is too much honesty? Do people really want to know, or do they want to hear a white bread, rom com type version of special needs parenting? On a related note, are blogs by nature super narcissistic?

It’s okay to talk about hard things if they’re funny. People are okay reading it if I’m laughing about it myself. Sometimes though, I don’t think cleaning up Jack’s daily constitutional off the laundry room floor is all that funny. It’s just irritating. The laundry room, by the way, is RIGHT NEXT TO THE BATHROOM. I mean, COME ON!

“Nobody wants to hear about Charlie’s extreme meltdowns every morning before school,” my inner Debbie Downer drones with a nasally voice.

I’m not sure if I should listen to her.

Also, as I write this, I’m realizing that this kind of sounds like a cry for validation. I don’t intend it to be this way. I’m just writing about the writer’s block. It’s kind of meta and possibly kind of boring.

The only other thing I can come up with right now, though, is a brief, fractured tale of a flying vacuum. Let’s stick with that. It’s more palatable than musing about why writing is currently hard. Here goes:

Our shop vac went missing. We searched the premises for days with no luck. Then, surprise! The neighbors found it in their yard and tossed it over the fence to us. Huzzah, Jack’s banished shop vac triumphantly returned.

We rejoiced and locked it up, out of Jack’s clutches.

Until today. While I spoke with Jack’s DSPD Support Coordinator, Jack buffaloed me into retrieving the shop vac. I acquiesced, because I needed him to leave me alone for ten minutes.

Shannon and I finished our meeting. She left, I started making dinner. I glanced outside to see Jack striding purposefully toward the fence, with the shop vac in his arms and a wicked smile on his face.

“Shizby!” I growled, before bolting out the back door. “Stop, Jack!” I called. He looked at me and moved toward the fence faster.

“No Jack! Stop! Come here right now!” I shouted. Jack smiled an evil smile and kept going.

“Ifyouthrowthatvacuumoverthefencesohelpmeyouwillbesorryyoulittlenaughtypickles!” was the basic gist of the vitriol that sprang from my contorted mouth as I raced down the deck stairs and ran across the lawn.

We may be the source of flying vacuums, but we do offer free entertainment for the neighbors.

As I ran, my mind snatched up a distant memory of something my sister Sarah noticed when she lived in San Francisco. Whenever she was on the street or rode any form of public transit, she played a game which she called Will They Make It?

When people would run to catch the BART or the MUNI or a cable car, Sarah coolly asked herself, “Will they make it?” Ideally, she would’ve recorded every WTMI moment and edited them into a tidy little YouTube video that people everywhere would share on Facebook. Sadly, she only recorded this mental montage in her brain.

“Nojacknojacknojack!” I screamed as I shot across the lawn. Jack reached the fence and abruptly stopped. He turned and handed me the vacuum. I made it. He listened. The prodigal shop vac remained.

According to Sarah, the poor schmucks of Will They Make It usually did NOT make it.

Maybe they should’ve screamed with righteous indignation as they ran. Apparently, it works.

  7 comments for “When Vacuums Fly

  1. Kerri
    November 14, 2014 at 8:03 am

    I, for one, think you should write constantly. I love what I learn from you. Also, you don’t have to always be funny. Being real is awesome. Funny is awesome, too.

  2. suz
    November 14, 2014 at 8:38 am

    My personal opinion? People do want to read about Charlie’s morning meltdowns, Jack’s code browns, and everything else including how you feel about. Parents of special needs children want to read it (at least the ones I know) and everybody else needs to read it because there are still way too many people who just don’t get it. Those people could use the education. But when it comes right down to it, it’s your blog. Write whatever you want. You talk about what you’re grateful for often enough that it doesn’t sound whinny to a regular reader. Definitely keep it real. I enjoy your blog and I love your writing style.

  3. Louise Plummer
    November 14, 2014 at 10:46 am

    I feel the same way about complaining. That is if I can be funny, I can complain. If not, I’m just a zit on the world’s butt.

    Keep writing anyway. I will think of you every time I enter my laundry room.

  4. Heather
    November 15, 2014 at 1:58 pm

    What wonderful timing to have a vacuum moment with Jack right AFTER the DSPD lady left. I’m glad that you “made it” to Jack in time and that the vacuum is safe for now! 🙂

  5. Jaada
    November 16, 2014 at 3:18 pm

    I am new to reading your posts, but I love real and I think your writing is brilliant.

  6. Emily
    November 18, 2014 at 9:03 pm

    I agree with suz (and everyone, really)… I love what you write–you’ve got great voice and style, and I learn things (funny, hard and profound) from your words.

  7. Melody
    November 25, 2014 at 8:12 pm

    I was rapt. Every moment. What a great story! You’re a wonderful writer and story teller. Because of your gift(s) you can complain about anything and I’ll love reading it. (And how the hell does Louise always come up with the best responses to everything?)

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