I mentioned the card table in another post about saving things “just for good” and then not using them. Then end result is they go out of fashion, break, or become damaged from being stored, before you get a chance to use them.
That’s what happened to this table. It was a lovely little table. All bright and shiny, with a compartment for storing decks of card or game pieces and poker chips. The top spun around to make a larger flat surface for game playing. Or you could fold one leaf up against the wall and use it as a display table. You could also fold the leaves together to make a smaller and slightly taller table.
Well, as I mention before, by the time I was gifted the table it was in very sad shape. I had meant to repair it. And at one time I would have enthusiastically grabbed the needed tools and dug right in.
But times have changed and while I love doing projects still, every time I looked at the table I felt overwhelmed and angry. I was angry because it was neglected. I was angry at my mom because she resolutely hung on to this table she didn’t want, but also didn’t want to give up. Instead it became warped, water marked and the hinges were broken. It was after my parents got divorced, so I think she didn’t like the reminders of happier family times. Maybe she didn’t want me to have it because she knew I would care for it and put it a place where she would see it when she visited. Maybe she just wanted to punish my dad, and took it out on the table instead. I know that after the divorce a lot things were broken over the coming years; things that were at one time well cared for. This table had reminders of a past that she didn’t want to deal with.
And frankly, neither did I.
This past week, when I was deciding on what to do with the table, I realized that I had grown past the need to have it in my life. I don’t know why I was feeling that way, but something was telling me that it was time to let go. I have memories of fun times. But although I had hoped to create more fun times with friends at this table, it would never be the same.
I finally realized that it was okay. Old memories are great and the good ones are treasures to keep. But every day is a chance for new memories; different memories. If you spend too much time thinking about the good old days, that’s all you’ll ever have.
You’ll miss out on the new memories; the new “good old days” to come.
So yesterday, a lady and her husband came by to look at the table. They rubbed their hands gently over the top and down the base. They thoroughly looked at every nook and cranny . I watched the changing expressions in the woman’s face. I saw curiosity. I saw thoughtfulness. But most of all, I saw new possibilities for that table in her eyes.
As we talked, I learned that she was going to up-cycle the table and give it a fresh look and new function. It was a possibility that hadn’t occurred to me. I don’t know why. I upcycle things all of the time as yard art and gifts. This realization really stuck with me. That I kept seeing that pedestal card table for what it had once been, not for what it could be. Maybe that’s why I was never able to fix it. I couldn’t see it as being anything else than what it once was. Bringing it back to that original condition was impossible. There was too much damage. I was stuck. But seeing through her eyes, opened my thinking to looking at it as what it could be now.
It was a fresh start and a new life for an old piece of furniture.
I felt lighter as I watched that table leave for it’s new home. I had no regrets. A huge weight was lifted off my shoulders. So much so, that shortly after I sold the table, I took a long restful nap.
And I hadn’t slept like that all week.