Sunday, February 15, 2015

A Chair Full of Memories

Sixteen years ago, we moved into our house.  Its 2100 square feet seemed voluminous to us, and I wondered how we would ever fill all those rooms.  Of course, that was crazy thinking, because now we are bursting at the seams!  But back then. . .things were different!  No children yet, meager belongings, and a lot of empty space.

A member at our church was moving away, and suggested we come over and take any of the furniture they would no longer need.  I was thrilled!  On a snowy January day, we acquired several new-to-us items.  Among them were a table and chairs, an enormous desk, a dresser, and a recliner.  Sixteen years later, I am sitting at my kitchen island, a mere few feet away from the hand-me-down recliner.

It's not really much to look at, I'll admit.  It's comfortable, though, and more importantly to me, it has been with us since the beginning.

In this recliner, I:

  • have rocked all my babies.  I even blogged about it here and here  I recall rocking my second son, firmly and quickly, tucking him to my side to get him to sleep.  I recall rocking my daughter, my eyes heavy, hers alert, praying futilely for some rest for my weary self.  I nursed them all in that chair, boppy tucked snugly around my waist, until mamma and babe drifted off to sleep.
  • received the news that my beloved grandma had died.  It was New Year's Day 2000, and I was sitting in the recliner, heavily pregnant, watching a movie with my husband.  I knew before I heard my mom's words on the phone.  I rocked and cried and mourned her there.
  • recovered from my back injury last year.  I sat, immobilized, for days in that chair, watching endless episodes of Law and Order.  
  • fed my third child via his feeding tube. It was a tricky business, feeding our son through his tube.  He had to be distracted and happy (or asleep!), or the formula would come back out the syringe, causing a mess and basically mass hysteria.  He couldn't grab at the tube and syringe, which he was wont to do, or we would also have a mess.  So the recliner was the best choice as he got older.  I would hold him in my lap, rocking gently, whilst balancing the formula-filled syringe and offering him a toy to play with.  Praise God he now enjoys steak and apples and sitting comfortably at the table.
  • sat, teary, as I processed the news that we were pregnant with our fourth child.  Don't misunderstand - this child was not a surprise, and was very much wanted!  But I recall feeling overwhelmed when I realized I was going to be the mother of four children. . .when I still felt like I was about 18 years old!  I rocked and prayed, and my anxious heart was soothed.  
  • averted disaster.  While I was playing with my young son, I held him up above my head to kiss his tummy.  The recliner's center of gravity shifted, and the baby and I tipped over backward.  I held to him fast and thankfully we both avoided injury.  He thought the whole thing was hilarious!
None of the furniture in this room is new.  Everything is used and well-loved by five kids, two adults, and now one dog.  The recliner fits right in.  If we ever decide we can get new furniture in the family room, it will be pretty hard for me to let it go.  A new one might be pretty, but this one speaks volumes.

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