Daily Prompt: Moment of Clarity

Tell us about a time you’d been trying to solve a knotty problem — maybe it was an interpersonal problem, a life problem, a big ol’ problem — and you had a moment of clarity when the solution appeared to you, as though you were struck by lightning.

I remember when I was a teenager, I went through a puzzle phase. One in particular was a simple Rubiks Cube

And I remember for so many weeks I’d been at it for so long twisting and turning and getting so close to solving it, only to end up throwing it across the room in sheer frustration or smashing it on the floor in a rage.

It had been driving me crazy. I was obsessed with it. I had even started dreaming about it.

Anyway, this one day I was sitting at my desk studying or doing homework and I decided to take a break and there it was staring at me; taunting me. I sat there staring at it for what felt like ages, maybe ten or so minutes, and just out of curiosity I walked over to it, picked it up and studied each and every side, over and over.

I kept rolling it around in my hand trying to visualise each and every move in my mind and then suddenly started twisting it… it took a couple of attempts and a lot of back-tracking my moves, but about 20minutes later I stood there completely amazed with myself. I’d done it. I’d solved a Rubik’s Cube. I don’t know how, nor have I ever been able to do it again… I think it was a complete fluke; sheer luck that I managed to get it – and as I was home alone, there was nobody to share my achievement with. I kept it solved and sitting on the windowsill and couldn’t help but smile every time I saw it.

One day after having some friends over, I glanced across the room and saw the Cube.

Somebody had played with it. It was all mixed up again. I was devastated. I couldn’t handle the torment all over again, so I threw it out. And just like that, it was all over.


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