When a table is more than just a piece of furniture

Today I picked up two replacement chairs for our kitchen table. One recently met an untimely demise at the hands of my second-born, another is on its last leg (no pun intended of course). And it got me thinking about this table we gather around each day for family meals, school work, and so much more…

I have had my kitchen table for almost a decade now. I still remember buying it with my father, as we worked feverishly to furnish my first apartment out of college. A week prior, I had packed up my life in New York, hugged my friends goodbye, finished my last final exam, and moved across the country to begin a new adventure in Colorado. I remember finding this table and chair set at one of the local furniture stores and falling in love with it. It was simple, cozy, not too big, sturdy, functional, perfect for what I needed as I started out on my own. And back then I could not possibly imagine what the future would hold for this little table…

IMAG0389I never could have imagined sitting down at this table for a romantic dinner with my future husband. I didn’t imagine it would be the site where my children would messily learn the art of feeding themselves, first with their hands, and later with utensils. I never envisioned it being the place where my boys would sit down to draw, paint, and eventually read and write. Did I know back then that I would scrub crayon marks off of its surface nearly every single day? That the surface would someday be peppered with tiny little fork stab marks from overzealous eaters? If only this dear table and I could have seen what the future would bring…. the memories that would be made gathering around it.

And it’s not just the kitchen table. All around our home I am surrounded by items that have made this wonderful journey through adulthood with me. There’s the couch that sits in our upstairs landing, the same couch that my brother convinced me to buy with my very first paycheck. This is the couch my friends would crash on after a long night of partying… that I would crash on when my overnight shift took its toll and I couldn’t find the energy to get up and go to bed.  Now I crash on it when I have a child who needs extra snuggles in the middle of the night. I have comforted all of my children at one time or another, cuddling them on its soft cushions. I have even spent a few nights there on my own, listening, because it’s just a little closer to the boy’s rooms and it makes me feel closer to them when they aren’t feeling well and might need me.

It’s amazing the memories you will build in the items that surround your life. They grow with you as you grow, meeting your needs as they change. I know not everyone holds on to furniture for 10 years, or longer. I also know that even we will not be able to hold on to all of this furniture forever. We are already a tight fit around the kitchen table now, I expect that to become a more pressing problem as the boys grow bigger. Eventually, we will have to upgrade.

But in the meantime, I will continue to enjoy the stories my furniture can tell me, the memories we can make together…. the stories that are filled with the love of family.

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Aunt Judy
    Apr 24, 2014 @ 04:55:35

    Excellent, Sharon. What a gift God has given you.

    Reply

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