I don’t think I was quite like other 16-year olds. I didn’t want a sweet sixteen party, that wasn’t the tradition in our family. I wanted a rocking chair. Yes, a sixteen year old girl wanted a rocking chair; by that time I was already and Auntie and taking care of little ones and a rocking chair was crucial to calming a crying baby.
Of course I knew the magic of the rocking chair, having seen my mother rock many a small child in the black chair with gold painted accents, that typically occupied a corner of the living room or family room. All of her children and many grandchildren all spent time in the That particular chair is now upstairs in my house, having served the same purpose when our grandchildren were living with us.
My favorite thing about a good rocking chair is the sound it makes as it rolls back and forth on its runners. I find it both hypnotic and comforting. The older the chair the better the sound, the more complex the story that brings the chair to its current location.
The rich, dark brown rocker that my parents gave me has made some history itself. It has been in every dorm room, apartment and house that I’ve lived since 1979. I also, occasionally, have put the rocker in my office, depending on where I was working at the time. When I was counseling college students, it was comforting to students experiencing a difficult time. When I was the director at a daycare center, kids whose parents were late to pick them up, who got hurt on the playground, who needed a safe place for a timeout, all got a chance to sit in Miss Kelly’s chair.
My beautiful chair has taken up residence in my husband’s “workshop” (a.k.a. the garage), so he can restore it to its original luster and make its way back to its rightful place in my living room.
Today’s thank you is to my Mom and Dad for giving me just what I wanted for my Sweet Sixteen!