I pick up the crusted poptart from the floor and place it back on the lower level of the refrigerator. My hand brushes against the lettuce as I pull away. The lettuce slides and again pushes the poptart back onto the floor. I bend over, pick it up, and place the poptart back in the fridge.
I walk away, the poptart safe in it's cold cave.
Later in the day, I go to make lunch. I have to move the poptart to get to the lunch meat that one of the kids has stuffed in the back. I also grab the lettuce, placing the bologna package on the poptart for a second while my other hand grabs for the mustard. I get everything I need and shut the door to the refrigerator.
I make dinner that night. The poptart still sitting like a sentry every time I open the fridge to get something. It's silently waiting.
The next day I repeat the pattern of constant food preparation for the horde that is my family. The fridge door opens and closes, opens and closes. The light illuminating the blueberry pastry like a lighthouse on a stormy coast.
The week continues and so does the uncovered poptart on the bottom shelf. Sometimes it is knocked off the shelf and it is quickly picked up. Back into its abode, its cooled castle.
The next week comes and the poptart has been knocked off the shelf so much that it is now in two pieces. Its edges are crumbled and a bit smushed. The blueberry filling is dried out, the deep purple color draining a little bit more as the door opens and shuts.
Two weeks have now passed and groceries have been added and subtracted from the fridge. The poptart has brief house guests of leftover spaghetti or an unfinished brat. But there stay is short-lived, unlike the poptart. which is now timeless.
A month goes by and I open the fridge door. I notice the poptart and really see if for the first time. It's more crumbles now than an actual poptart. Its rectangular shape has disintegrated into nothing but a memory. It no longer slides out of the fridge because it has slowly attached itself to the bottom shelf. The sugar sweetness is gone, leaving nothing but an adhesive paste.
I look at the poptart and in return, it looks at me. I join it on its journey of self-discovery. Troubles melt away, my world becomes uncluttered, and my mind clears. In this state, an epiphany hits me with the truth of a thousand sons. I understand myself more than I ever have and I understand the poptart.
One thought echoes in the emptiness of my mind, over and over again:
Jesus Christ, I need to clean the fridge out. Dear God that's disgusting.