Though it sounds dramatic, that’s EXACTLY how I feel at this very moment. I just got a call from my trusted computer repair shop informing me that my Western Digital MyBook external hard drive is toast -- nothing was retrievable, nothing could be saved. NADA.
This is the hard drive upon which I have stored the last six years of my children’s lives -- all their photos, videos, and audio recordings. Yes, I have photo books littering my house and I have family movies on DVD, but there are those precious moments -- “the first ABC song,” “the random singing of show tunes,” the casual yet adorable encounters that never made it to DVD but are nonetheless precious and rare. All gone.
It sounds so silly, I know, but even as I type up this entry, tears are welling up as I will never again hear my son belch out his first attempt at “I am a pizza, extra cheese...” I also lost my 4-year old daughter's soulful rendition of Earth, Wind and Fire’s “September.”
I suppose I should have seen it coming. The past year, the hard drive's connection to the computer has been spotty. Often I needed to disconnect the hard drive and power it down and restart it before the computer would recognize it. Just a week ago, I got the “click-of-death,” which is an old-school reference to when a hard drive fails you hear this “click, click, click” and nothing happens. Well, it is the same sound, hasn’t changed after all these decades. I looked on the Internet on how to fix this problem -- it was not promising, but I was hopeful when I brought it to my computer repair store.
Backup, backup, backup... We hear that all the time, but honestly, who really has the time? Publications always ask what would you grab if you had only five minutes to evacuate your home, and I always say, "my computer." Yet, I had this false sense of security that the data will always be there and never backed-up my data. A lesson learned the hard way.
I need time to grieve this loss. As I stand at the kitchen counter in disbelief, I hear my son singing, “I am a pizza... please take me home.”