It had been a large walk in closet. Clothes were taken away, shelving was removed, and it was painted a deep sea blue color. The carpet was taken out and a small rug was bought and placed in the center of the room. A vintage wooden desk was placed in the far side of the room, with a small book shelf filling the other side.
The last step was buying a computer to occupy the rolling top desk. Soon that was accomplished, it was a relatively undemanding task, but one that drained the buyers pocket immediately.
I had my writing room. For if you didn't know this before, I am an author. I wrote a small fantastical story of innocent romance and the bonding of a boy and girl. I had no way of knowing that it would go on to be a story in the bookshelf of every home. More was demanded of me, and I wrote a sequel, and then another, and finally a prequel. All which I wrote in that old walk in closet. I ended the series there, for I had then found a romance of my own. It was in the form of a man named Finnegan Hicks. He was short and stout, and had nowhere near the description of the muscular and beautiful men in my novels.
But his personality and kindness was all that mattered to me. He was the sweetest, dearest, and most inwardly beautiful Canadian man in the entire world. He and I shared a bond that progressed even the the most intricate of story characters'.
After we married we decided to start a family. It started out with a dream of having a very large family, anywhere from the boisterous numbers of five to ten. Then when I became pregnant with our first we decided on having only three. I became very sick and tired, I couldn't make any money because I couldn't even stumble over to the old writing closet some days.
Then eight months and twenty days passed, and I gave birth to our only son, Finn, named after his father. For when we held him in our arms we knew he was the only one for us. He was chunky, pink and perfect. From his little toes to his little nose, his whole being was a mixture of perfection and faultless, at least in our eyes. Our neighbor told us he was too big, a close friend said his eyes were too close together, and my mother-in-law told me he looked too unique for a baby boy. I paid none of them no mind. I just watched our sweet Finn grow.
Soon he was a toddler, unsteady and comical. He ran around our Victorian-style home in only a diaper and shoes most days.
His small nutty-colored curls waving with the impact of every stumble.
His dark hazel eyes tinted with a laugh every time I made a funny face or when his father catapulted him the air.
His tiny smile, just waiting to burst out whenever we presented him with his food or toys or almost anything.
He was my happy baby. My Finn.
He grew to be a eight-year-old, obsessed with nature. Worms, rocks, and dirt were right up his alley. He came tracking in mud, ooze, and slush, all proudly conjured up from making 'fairy potions' and 'mud cakes' with his father. I was a bit too queasy for that.
Every night he went to bed I would take a dirt and worm-gut infested rag and wipe more gumbo off the carefully placed oak flooring. I would giggle as I wiped a stain for the umpteenth time, and break out the all-purpose cleaning spray. Mrs. Peter's from the classic children's book, "The Seven Silly Eaters," said it best, "What a silly little boy have I", although she had food related problems and I had dirt related problems.
Every morning Finn would come out of his nursery room, clad in his little black corduroy overalls, with a shovel in one hand, and an extensive smile plastered on his face. He would stuff some cereal or a PB&J sandwich down his throat and run out the door in tiny blue rain boots.
During these adventures I would shut myself in the closet and type my heart away. I proceeded to write another novel, and a small non-fiction book and a sequel. My heart was happy and I thought nothing could change that.
One day Finn went off to school, I watched him step into my husband's car, triumphantly waving goodbye. He was so brave and didn't have an anxiety in his little stuffed head. That day he made a friend named Moriah, a spunky black girl with cork-screw curls and no filter. I recall her asking me once why I was being selfish and not giving Finn a sibling, my sweet boy proceeded to defend me and just state that all of my love filled him and I couldn't take any more loving or being loved. I smiled and continued to wash the sudsy dishes. By the time I was drying them they had moved onto another subject.
It was a Tuesday afternoon when Finn got too adventurous. Multiple remorseful people had multiple pitiful stories of how it happened, but the odd thing was that I only trusted and took to heart one explanation. Maybe it was because it made sense, maybe it was because she knew him better than any of the teachers or other students. Maybe it was because it made me hurt less. It was Moriah's.
She told me how he had been telling her out about his adventures with his daddy. How he made mud pies for the queen and collected rocks for coal miners. He said he had cured cancer and the common cold. Of course it was all the stuff of nonsense, tales spun by imagination, placed in his head and refusing to leave. I had loved him for it.
She went on to tell me that he had found a rock he just had to give to the coal miners. It was something that would ease their work. (I had always thought he would be a writer one day with all of the stories he told.)
He went to the edge of a small cliff, nothing that would hurt one if one fell. It apparently held one shiny smooth stone, a stone that would fix the world, if only Finn could just hold it.
He carefully made his way to the edge, picked the stone up triumphantly and tossed it to Moriah, who then held it in the air and laughed. The deed was done, they had the stone.
But then Finn saw another one, down the slope aways. This one was more shiny, more smooth, it glittered like diamonds according to Moriah. He yelled that he would be back in a minute.
Apparently he went further and further, collecting more and more finds. Ores, lava rocks, bits of marble and more. He was in rock heaven. He filled his pockets and his hands.
But then he saw the rocks of all rocks, a giant natural beauty, more natural than marble but with the look of a giant crystal. It was on the edge of a cliff that could kill and had. Many children had fallen to their deaths. He reached and...slipped.
They found a him laying, eyes closed.
I didn't talk to anyone for a month. I stayed alone in my room, not moving, not thinking. My Finn was dead. He was gone and buried. I would never see his little rosy cheeks, I would never hear his giggle, I would never see the delight in his eyes when he brought me a fresh-baked mud pie. My only child, my son, my Finn was gone.
I swore I would never write again. I told myself that I would never think. I wanted to die a simple death and see Finn in eternity. If it wasn't for my husband I wouldn't have written the words you are reading. I wanted to stop hearing, seeing, loving, feeling. I just wanted to dive into a nothingness of darkness. I didn't want emotion, I tried to rip the sadness, the depression out of me. I tried to forget. But every time I saw a speck of dust, a rock, or a pair of corduroy overalls I would break down in a pool of tears. My face was sallow and the skin stretched across my skull. No trace of fatty tissue or anything could be seen. I got my wish, I was an unfeeling skeleton. Neither dead nor alive, just in a sleep. My husband thought he would lose me too.
Then he told me to write again. To write about anything or anyone, to write fiction, non-fiction, fantasy, romance. Anything. He thought it would fix me and I thought it would break me. I thought it would just be a reminder of what my family used to be. I didn't want to tease my spirit into thinking that one day Finn would clomp through the door. I didn't want to live a lie that one day I would be cleaning up the remainders of mud pies fit for the Queen.
My husband made me start writing again, he told I deserved to die if I didn't start really living. If I didn't feel something he told me I wouldn't be human. But the thing that really fractured me and puzzled me back together was what he said last. He told me that Finn didn't deserve the type of mother that wished to forget him and to not feel sad about his loss.
As I walked into the room, the old closet, and type the words, 'once upon a time..." into the empty document on the computer, I broke. I realized that I could never, ever kid myself into feeling that Finn was still alive. I knew he was dead and I felt it. I would always feel it, but it inspired me to write better. It inspired me to feel, to never take anything for granted and to love all the more.