Sorting Through the Pieces

Tara essays

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Lately life has felt like a puzzle. A puzzle right out of the box with pieces scattered, turned every which way, some upside down, some right side up. Some gathered in a pile, some flung across the table. It's pure chaos. I’ve been trying to gather my pieces and reassemble myself into a beautiful picture but have been unsure about my ability to achieve such a lofty goal. It’s so hard to find the time to take a break, to leave everything behind and take some time to organize all the pieces. To find all of the misplaced pieces and to throw out the few pieces that don’t belong anymore. There comes a time when you must stop, look at the picture on the box, and take a good look at all the pieces to decide what needs to be done in order to put the puzzle together.

As a kid, we want everyone to be our friend. That guy walking down the street, that girl singing in the grocery store. The boy that smashed my cookies into crumbs and the girl that pulled my hair at recess.

Then we grow up a bit. We realize that not everyone that we encounter wants to be our friend. Not that girl singing in the grocery store aisle, cursing at us under her breath. Definitely not the guy walking down the street giving us that not-so-friendly hand gesture. Through trial and error, heartbreak and tears, we discover that not all the pieces to our puzzle fit anymore. It’s time to take a look at the picture on the box and see what we are missing.

As you start sorting the pieces, you discover that some pieces have gotten lost along the way and the search is on in order to find them. Some pieces have been bent in half or become mangled and will have to be straightened out, or even glued together, in order to fit again. Some of these pieces can just not be repaired and leave a hole. If you are lucky you are able to fill that hole with a new piece. A piece made with love that is a better fit than the original. Sometimes the hole isn’t meant to be filled, but the hope that the surrounding pieces help that hole to be less noticeable grows with every passing day.

Some pieces are in the box but don’t fit in the puzzle and will need to be removed. Some pieces have been right there all this time, and even though it was believed that they did not even fit into this puzzle, they may actually end up being that one piece that has been missing the entire time. It is even possible to find some new pieces that you thought would never fit in your puzzle, but to your delight they fit just like they should have been there from the beginning.

Take the time to look at your puzzle. Really look at all of the pieces. Spread them out, turn them over, sort them out, and really look at them. It isn't an easy task that is for sure. There is nothing easy about searching for the lost pieces and it is hard as hell to throw out the pieces that don't fit any longer, but taking the time to really look at them before putting them together is so enlightening and refreshing and at times frightening.

You never know, once your puzzle has been put back together, the picture could be something you never imagined possible.

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About the Author


Tara of You Know it Happens at Your House Too is the mother of five young kids, wife to one hard working farmer. She is the sometimes hilarious, sometimes serious, usually sarcastic writer of the amazingly popular (in her own mind) blog . In her free time she enjoys wiping butts and noses all while picking up Legos and Polly Pockets. If she ever had a moment to herself she would go pee, then relax with a nice, cheap glass (bottle) of wine and any movie starring Johnny Depp. She has completely forgotten what it is like to do anything alone. Tara lives in Kansas with her husband, Farmer Bob, and her five children. You can also find her ignoring her kids on and .

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