I grew up with a glider. We did not always have a baby around, but there was always the glider in the space between the kitchen and the dining area.
Thus it was perfectly normal that I bought a glider the month before I got married. It was worn in a well-cared-for sort of way, and the woman who sold it to me from her small, smoke-free home told me about using it for her three children. It accounted for $25 of about $300 that we spent to furnish our first apartment.
When the time came to move, we gave the glider to my parents along with the rest of the furniture that we could not quickly re-sell. They put the glider in the corner in the kitchen by the stairs, the same place we had a glider for years in my childhood before it finally stopped working completely.
This Thanksgiving I walked into my parents’ kitchen to see Josh holding my grumpy two-month-old nephew in that same glider. My family is full of baby-snatchers who all think that a minute is quite enough time for anyone else to hold the youngest member of the family. But no one attempted to take my nephew from Josh.
The previous evening my brother and sister-in-law had gone to run an errand and left my nephew in the care of the rest of the family. I did not notice that his parents were gone until others were having difficulty soothing him because all he wanted was food.
The sister holding the crying baby gladly handed him over to me. I knew that I might be able to appease him, but it would be difficult since I was wearing a shirt with a normal neckline and this squirmy child is infuriated by the feeling of skin without food. So I did the obvious thing and passed the baby on to Josh. He quieted instantly. Josh kept the baby calm and quiet, if not entirely happy, for the next half hour and amazed my baby-snatching family into leaving the grumpy child in his arms whenever the child’s mother needs a bit longer for a break.
That is how I found Josh holding the baby in the glider on Thanksgiving, uninterrupted despite the number of baby-snatchers milling about.
And I remembered.
And I realized once again that it is awesome in the truest sense of the world to live so intimately with someone who loves and cares and gives so fully.
Josh acted as if it was the most normal thing in the world that our first apartment be furnished with an old glider rather than a cozy man-chair. When I told him that I had ordered a glider as the newest baby’s gift rather than sending a gift card (for less) as agreed, he asked only if it was the glider that I had previously picked out. I explained that it was, since the new mother was the first of her friends to have a child, and had not decided that she wanted a glider at all until after she started breastfeeding.
Now that we have been married for 4.5 years and we have normal furniture and no children, it seems odd to me that I would buy a glider before we were even married. But it makes perfect sense that I know what glider to order for someone else. Not only do the majority of my friends have children, it seems that all of the blogs I started reading when we were planning weddings at the same time are now full of posts on things like how the glider they bought for the second child is so much better than the one they suffered through with the first. So, yeah. I know a lot more about gliders now, and it is surprisingly normal.
Yet what remains absolutely astonishing is that I share my life with someone who lives so perfectly in whatever state of furniture we find ourselves. I think, perhaps, that I may even learn to do so as well. Eventually.
For now I am hoping to find a used rocking chair in which to drink my evening tea. That would totally rock, right?
- Aborting Honesty with Language
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