My stomach is in knots and a cold sweat is breaking out across my forehead. I'm feeling panicky and nauseated. Illness? Job interview? Parenting crisis?

Laptop failing to charge.

The laptop cord to my Macbook Air has had a love-hate relationship with the outlets in my house practically from the day I brought it home from the store. It lulled me into a false sense of security during those first few weeks, charging happily in my office, until one day, it decided it didn't like that outlet any more.

It gave me no reason. It just sat there, staring at me, refusing to illuminate the little light that turns green, then orange, to give me peace of mind and let me know that all is well in the recharging universe.

So I did what any responsible parent would do. I tried other outlets, determined to find a place that would cause the crying (mine) to cease and restore my Macbook to her former, fully charged glory.

For a while, the power cord worked in the outlet in the mudroom. Then, someone else who lives in this house (and shall remain nameless) did the unthinkable.

He (or she) unplugged the cord, restarting the whole cycle.

That was when I knew it was time for my baby to be seen by a professional. I took her to the Apple Store and made an appointment with a tech specialist. My laptop gurgled and cooed (okay, not really) and behaved perfectly for the technician, cooperating immediately with their outlet, illuminating her charging light as though she were getting ready for a party. Nevertheless, the tech gave me a new cord, and I left, expecting that we'd live happily ever after.


So I found a nice spot for the power cord and parked it, giving my family strict orders not to move it, and for a while, everything was peaceful. Here a wiggle, there a jiggle, and the laptop would charge to 100%.

Then suddenly, the miracle location no longer worked. I unplugged the cord and took it with me to Starbucks, where it worked like a charm. Then last night, her battery dropped to dangerously low levels, and this morning, no outlet would satisfy her.

After two false starts in the living room, where the charging light lit briefly, but refused to stay lit, I finally got her settled down in the mudroom, home to one of the two outlets in this house that will satisfy her needs, no matter how colicky or tired she is. I've been peeking in her from time to time and she seems okay. The charging light is on steadily now. There is no more flickering.

Everything I am working on is on that laptop. I chastised myself for not backing things up, only to realize that it wouldn't have mattered. I'd need another computer to plug the thumb drive into in order to make any progress. I briefly considered composing the old-fashioned way, with paper and pencil, but dismissed that choice as less-than-ideal for today's tasks.

So here I sit at my dining room table with my portable keyboard, using my iPad for a screen. (Yay!! One more thing a first generation iPad can still do!) I will most likely have to reformat this post, but at least I've gotten it written.

Meanwhile, I've learned not to get too complacent where my Macbook is concerned. She looks self-sufficient, but she still needs nurturing. I can't let her get too depleted before I put her down to recharge, both for her sake and for mine because, you know, I worry.

Overall, she's a great little laptop and I know I just have to put these difficult times in perspective. And when the light is lit, and all's well with the world, it's very easy to do just that.


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Copyright 2014 Lisa Hess