I was given a gift by someone who loves me dearly many years ago. It was a puzzle. The image on the box was of a beautiful scenery. There was a mountain in the background with the brightest of hues depicting trees, boulders and vast terrain. The backdrop was a sky so blue with a water body below it. I was in awe at how gorgeous it all was. I remember asking myself if I could piece it all together. It wasn’t the world’s largest puzzle but it had pieces in the thousands. I think 2,000 or was it 1,000?
I recall putting all the pieces on the kitchen table because I was determined to complete it all in one day. What was I thinking? It was fun as I placed all the pieces of the border together. I could do it! I was doing it! I felt so awesome even though it was actually easy to do.
Then it was time to start the middle of it. I was determined as I dug for more pieces. Oh shit there were so many pieces! I kept telling myself “ You got this!” It was coming along for I could see the outline of the mountaintop. Okay so maybe I was squinting my eyes as I looked.
I had started at 6 am and then it was 9 am. It was breakfast time on a Saturday and my mom wanted the table to serve breakfast. Ah shit why didn’t I foresee this. I was just so into that puzzle. How could I move it? I got upset that my family was so large and the entire table was needed. There were 7 of us. Dang it! Then my mom said “Muévete es hora de comer! Vete ya y cambiate de pijama.” In English means-Move it! It’s time to eat and go change your pajamas already!” Arghh I was so annoyed.
My brother then came in and said to me that he was going to push it onto the floor. “Dare you!” I shouted back. He then actually got a cardboard from his old science project and slid it below the puzzle border. He helped me move it onto the floor. This was my daily routine and I was happy it was summer so no school. We were too many kids in the family so no day camp either. It was just me and my puzzle for the summer.
I was faithful doing the puzzle until all of a sudden the pieces started looking all the same to me. There were too many hues of green, yellow and blue. I stopped doing it and every time I closed my eyes to sleep it was that puzzle I kept seeing. I was so sick of that puzzle. I kept forgetting to move it too so my mom was constantly yelling to get it off the table.
I couldn’t deal with it anymore. I started resenting that I even started it. Stupid stupid puzzle! Why did I think I could do it? I felt so dumb. I got so frustrated with it so I tore it all apart. It had taken me at least 3 weeks to complete what was before me but I didn’t care. I wanted it gone! Pieces went flying everywhere. The table got some. The floor had some and even a few landed on my baby brother’s head as he passed me by. My mother then walked in and told me to pick up all the pieces and to also practice patience. She said to put it away and to try it in another week or two. I said I would so I did.
Deep down I felt like a loser because I had given up. I hated that puzzle but at the same time I missed it. It had given my day purpose. It made me feel smart to even own that puzzle. 7 days went by and it did help me relax. I was then ready to tackle it again. I would do it by sections.
I carefully separated all the pieces with similar colors. I was organized and I could see it. It wouldn’t be long before I had enough pieces together to actually appreciate the scenery coming along. Yes I could see the mountain and the water body. Yes, yes I was invincible. I was the coolest 9 yr old on my block! Heck in the world! I was happy as I could make out the beautiful sky with all it’s shades of blue. Yeah me yeah me. My Dad hears the commotion and said “Be quiet! It’s super late. Why are you up?” I exclaimed back “I did the puzzle! I did it!” I had finished it so off to bed I went at 1 am. I was going to put glue over it in the morning. I would hang it up. I decided I would keep it till forever.
Next morning my brother tells me “Hey the puzzle is missing a piece.” “No stop lying!” I yelled at him. “I’m serious Guany” he yells back at me. “Stop lying! You took it out. So give it back!” I screamed with my voice about to break into a cry. “Give it back! I’m not playing! Please just give it back!”
INTERESTED IN KNOWING WHAT HAPPENED TO THAT LAST PIECE? DID MY BROTHER TAKE IT? DID I FIND IT? STAY TUNED. PUZZLE PART 2 TO BE POSTED ON WEDS 4/25
Hugs from Brooklyn