Saturday, March 03, 2012

On, In, and Around Mondays: Operation Memory Delivery

Gold Couch

"We'll be there in 20 minutes," they said.

I hung up the phone.

"Can you help me move all these books, Honey?" I said to my Littlest. "They're delivering the couch very soon."

She helped me stack and restack the many books we have on the floor near the couch. This is where my Eldest camps out every day, reading, doing her school stuff, making short movies of Spock and Kirk lip-synching things like Mozart's Requiem.

When the stacking was finished, I stayed on alone, and my girl went upstairs to cry.

The delivery guys came and went. The couch looked lovely, but wrong, of course.

Where was the couch on which I'd nursed my girls, taught them to read, watched Merlin in the dark... with the curtains drawn for extra mystery? Out on the sidewalk, soaking up rain.

My girl came back downstairs and cried some more. "It's ugly!" she complained. "I'm never going to sit on it. Not in my whole life." Then she wailed, "It has no memories!"

"We'll have to make some memories."

"I wouldn't make a single memory on a thing like that," she complained again.

She just about wore me down with all her couch-mourning, and I said as much. Then I went upstairs, because it's hard for me to absorb such strong emotions after a while.

About ten minutes later, we passed each other on the red oak stairs, and she took me aside and whispered, "I stood on the arm of the couch."

I gave her one of those looks.

"Then I jumped!" she said.

"Don't tell me that. I don't want to know," I hugged her.

She hugged me back and said, "I'm just making some memories." Then she walked away, and said over her shoulder, "I might do it again tomorrow."

I shook my head and thought, what am I going to do with that girl.

_______

On, In and Around Mondays (which partly means you can post any day and still add a link) is an invitation to write from where you are. Tell us what is on, in, around (over, under, near, by...) you. Feel free to write any which way... compose a tight poem or just ramble for a few paragraphs. But we should feel a sense of place. Would you like to try? Write something 'in place' and add your link below.

If you could kindly link back here when you post, it will create a central meeting place. :)

On In Around button




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31 Comments:

Anonymous Lyla Lindquist said...

So, she's not one to hold a grudge, then. ;-)

I understand this a little more in my world every day, how we get ourselves tied up in our stuff -- not for our stuff's sake, but the life we've lived in it.

8:28 PM  
Blogger nance marie said...

couch-mourning...i love it...i love this story!
have fun breaking it in.
it needs a name, you know.

9:09 PM  
Blogger Bob Gorinski said...

We have a new couch scheduled for delivery this coming Monday. I'm wondering how our kids are going to respond (if at all). We've tried to prepare them for a tighter "no jumping" policy, so they're already against it.

10:03 PM  
Blogger Matthew Kreider said...

Let her work through those five stages of grief and loss. Just don't take her to a psychiatrist. He or she might ask your daughter to recline on yet another couch ... :)

11:19 PM  
Blogger Maureen said...

Worn of use, one's thrown
out, summarily put on

the sidewalk to soak in
the rain that will cleanse

another's well-made
memories from a place

where time sat still to be
savored. One arrives, not

yet treated a part of home,
needing its breaking in,

the way the heart breaks in
its love for everything.

11:55 AM  
Blogger diana said...

Oh, yeah. I remember this: the stuff of memories. My middle girl cried as the new owners drove away in our Volkswagen beetle, the only car she'd ever known. But we had 3 babes now and it would no longer work. I wish to this day we could have afforded to keep it for the kids to use when they were big enough...because it was literally stuffed with memories. Sigh. And my 3 year old? She did carry a bit of a grudge...until she was around six, I believe. :>)

1:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maureen's poem is perfect!

2:05 PM  
Blogger Jody Lee Collins said...

yes, Maureen's poem is perfect. thank you for sharing such a sweet memory about memories. Children are great barometers, I'm thinking....

5:46 PM  
Blogger lynnmosher said...

I don't know whether to laugh or cry...or both! Such a touching and poignant moment. I l-o-v-e this! May all your new memories weigh just as much as the old ones. Be blessed with wonderful couch moments!

6:24 PM  
Blogger Michelle DeRusha@Graceful said...

This made me laugh, because we had the couch-mourning phase around here, too. I actually took a photo of my son (he was about 4, I think) weeping on the old couch out on the front lawn (our trash service picks up old couches, can you believe it??? But they didn't need to...the college-age neighbor boy came by and hauled it off for his apartment). I'm sure the neighbors thought I was insane (and quite possibily cruel) for taking a picture of my son weeping on the couch on the front lawn.

I wish I'd wrote about it -- this is so good!

I love your new couch, by the way - it's very sophisticated.

9:39 PM  
Blogger Lisa notes... said...

We have a blue chair that I feel the same about. It still sits in our living room but can't much longer. Yet the memories...the memories. They'll have to linger with or without the chair.

Great post.

10:23 PM  
Anonymous kendal said...

don't know your girl, but i think i love her!

10:32 PM  
Blogger Debra said...

Everything in our house holds memory. The old couch, bought at an auction didn’t. And so it sat on the curb for someone else. One night my Abi sat on it for the longest time taking shots of the lunar eclipse. That’s the last memory we have of the old sofa.

10:52 PM  
Anonymous kingfisher said...

Your family has paid much more attention to making memories, than most have. I hope your girls are keeping journals of their memories, their thoughts. They are living, walking encyclopedias of Operation Memory!

God bless you and keep you in his tender care.

10:54 PM  
Anonymous Kimberlee Conway Ireton said...

Oh I so understand. When we sold our Honda Accord and I watched the new owner pull away from the curb in our beloved car (my first car, my only car), I cried. (And I wrote a blog post about it, too :)

And I loved Maureen's poem, especially the last two lines:

the way the heart breaks in
its love for everything.

Yes.

11:44 PM  
Blogger Shanda said...

Aw...love this. Making memories and giving in to making new ones! Swieet.

12:29 AM  
Anonymous kd sullivan said...

She sounds very Ann with an e....delightful!

8:52 AM  
Blogger Megan Willome said...

Oh, I love that girl!

9:29 AM  
Anonymous Simply Darlene said...

1. I've never owned a new couch.

2. One can always entice with a bowl of popcorn.

3. We pull our lawn furniture inside for winter and use it in the living room. Maybe you can bring in a sled this summer?

Blessings.

11:04 AM  
Blogger Joe Pote said...

What a sweet story of everyday life as a family!

Yes, children can get so worked up about such minor things...then again, so can we adults...

Thank you, for sharing!

11:34 AM  
Anonymous Dolly@ Soul Stops said...

your phrase "couch-mourning" and imagining her jumping off the couch made me smile...thanks, Laura :)

12:21 PM  
Blogger Nacole said...

i loved all of this. your girl is sassy and makes me smile. beautiful, delightful story. love how you can write about something so simple, and i feel like i'm right there with you.

blessings to you!

1:02 PM  
Anonymous Monica Sharman said...

You've got quite a family there. I wish I could've seen all the "looks"---yours and hers. :)

1:44 PM  
Blogger Laurie Collett said...

I have trouble letting go of objects that remind me of special memories -- praise God that He writes the memories in our hearts too!
Thanks for the lovely post, & God bless!
Laurie

2:27 PM  
Blogger Sheila said...

I've been surprised--stunned even--at the things that mean something because of the part they've played in our lives.

Jumping off the arm of the new couch. I love it.

8:46 PM  
Blogger Theresa Miller said...

Awe, memories. I never really thought about how hard it will be when we trade in our couch that my husband brought into our marriage and remains four children later. I think I'll just keep on appreciating it!

I like how your daughter deals. :)

9:58 PM  
Anonymous Sandra Heska King said...

"Don't tell me that. I don't want to know."

Then. I. Hugged. Her.

I don't know if I love her or you more.

11:23 PM  
Anonymous Craig said...

I have a friend who recently got rid of a stove – it was old – didn't work anymore – but she went through stove mourning. I didn't get it and she explained it – so many meals – so many memories – and it's just like your couch – I get your daughter. I'm glad she tried to make a new memory – enjoy your couch. I hearted this - thank you LL.

3:36 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

I remember a poem about getting rid of the couch that you wrote. I think that one brought tears. So many memories...

8:06 PM  
Blogger Denise J. Hughes said...

Oh, I love this. It's so true. Things possess beauty when they've captured our memories. Beautiful post.

2:18 AM  
Anonymous Alyssa Santos said...

My sister got new couches when her girls were around 10-13 and they mourned just like this -- they still pine for those mauve couches. We tie our heartstrings to these things that we call love and security -- but God does keep us moving, ever closer to tying our strings to him -- he never wears out. Love this piece, thank you!

12:09 PM  

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