Quickie: Things Fall Apart

by P. Braithwaite


I was doing some last minute planning before class. In an effort to find a reading, I was frantically pulling books from my bookshelf when the entire unit collapsed. One shelf fell into the one below it and the entire thing crumbled. A few flying books knocked over my tv, and the contents of my piggy bank spilled all over the floor.

I had about an hour before class started. I didn’t have time to clean up the mess…my roommates were showing my room to a potential inhabitant and they’d be mortified by this mess.

Sometimes, things fall apart.

Sometimes things fall apart at the worst effing times: bookshelves collapse, relationships fail, friendships change…things fall apart and suddenly we’re left with a choice: do we rebuild or walk away?

I’m moving in a week or two. My entire book collection lives on the floor and my cheap bookshelf is now in useless pieces. While part of me is irritated by this occurrence, and another part of me wanted to cry (I’m pms-ing) there was a part of me that knew it was time to start taking those books off of the shelf and putting them in boxes.

Things fall apart to remind us that nothing stays the same forever….sometimes things fall apart because we weren’t doing enough to make a less dramatic change.

So as I pack boxes and relive some of the memories in this room, I can’t help but smile at the realization that while things around me fall apart, I find a way to adjust — I find a way to keep myself together.

What gifts can you find in the things that are falling apart?