Thursday, October 22, 2015

The Chair

The chair started it's life as my grandfather's. 

I don't recall exactly when my grandfather procured the chair, although it was undoubtedly after my grandmother passed away. I don't remember it being in the apartment they shared at the end of her life. I do remember it being in that last apartment my grandfather lived in before he died, and how he would sit there to watch TV or listen to his big-band music while rocking. 

14-month old Abby with duck lips. 

After he died, the chair came home with my parents. It lived in the rec room in the basement for a time, until it migrated upstairs. They put it in the small bedroom that was mine as a child - a room that eventually contained a crib for Abby to use when we were in Winnipeg, which was a considerable amount of time during the first two years of her life. Abby and I put lots of miles on the chair while it was at my parents, rocking, nursing, cuddling and reading.

The chair found it's way to my house earlier this year. My brother had actually called me up months before, offering it to me as he was cleaning out his spare bedroom/office in preparation of his son's arrival.

I wanted the chair! I had occasionally wondered what had happened to it, as it disappeared from my parent's house several years earlier when they got new furniture. I didn't realize it had been adopted by my brother, and had been living there. Alas, I had to say no, as there was no room at this inn.

Christina sleeping.

A few months pass, and my husband and I were contemplating what to do with the sleeping arrangements. Christina sleeps (theoretically) in a crib in our room, as the other bedrooms are occupied with other kids. We'll eventually have more bedrooms in the basement, but we're not yet done the never-ending renovation. The problem was, Christina was (and is) still waking up to nurse, and I have no where to sit. It's tough to sit on the end of the bed and nurse when you're half asleep, so I would tuck in her bed with us and nurse. Naturally, we'd both be sound sleep about 30 seconds into this procedure, and in our bed she's stay the rest of the night.

Co-sleeping works for us when they're very young, but there is a point where we just want our own space. Usually that occurs somewhere around 6 to 12 months, when they become too restless and we get tired of sleeping with little knees and elbows in our backs. We were at that point with Christina, where I needed her to sleep in her own space. With both Rachael and Joseph, we solved this by putting a double mattress on the floor of their bedroom where they could sleep. I could nurse them to sleep cuddled up in bed, and then tiptoe back to my bed once they were asleep. It was only inches to fall if they managed to roll themselves out of bed, which was rare. It worked brilliantly. 

Except, there was no room at the inn for such a plan this go round. 

What to do? We discussed getting a king-sized bed, but that was frought with financial considerations. Plus, then we'd have this ginormous bed, to resolve a relatively short-lived problem. 

What I needed, I thought to myself, was a chair to fit in the alcove of the bay window in our bedroom. Then, it struck me. 

I needed the chair

It was perfect. Compact, with a small footprint, it was comfy and it rocked. It was brown, so it even fit our blue-and-brown quasi-decor. But the question was, what happened to it?

Turns out my brother couldn't part with it. He had it stored in his basement. He was very glad to send it with my father in law next time he was out this way.  

I love the chair. It sits in my bay window, facing east, where the sunlight streams in the morning. A love to sit and read there, with my coffee cup precariously balanced on the window ledge. The kids come and sit on the chair and keep me company while I fold laundry on my bed. Christina curls up in the chair with either me or Daddy to read "Llama Llama Nighty-Night". I sit there and nurse the baby in the evening while my husband gathers his clothes for the next morning, and we chat.

The chair is a connection to my grandfather. It's beginning to show it's age, the arms getting threadbare in spots, and it squeaks like crazy unless you rock just so. But it's the most comfortable chair in the house. It's like a big, warm hug from Grandpa. 

I love the chair. 

So do I.

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