SDL initialization woes

So I’m having a problem iterating my development cycle. If I don’t exit
cleanly and close SDL properly, it seems the next run will fail at SDL_init.
How am I supposed to ensure a clean exit while I’m still in the development
cycle? Is there some way to avoid this problem? Can I kill a background
process to get a “clean slate” to work on? What’s going on, exactly, that
causes this problem?

Any pointers would be appreciated, I rather hate having to reboot every
third run…

This is on Windows 95/98, BTW.