I’ve been listening to a ton of amazing old music over the past week…
…and it has me thinking about all of the awesome things that we throw away simply because something new and shiny is now in our face. We have created a disposable society. I for one, am all about the old. I am a sucker for a good deal especially when it involves antiques.
Last week I was at my favorite antique shop and suddenly a shimmering light shown down from heaven onto the most glorious desk I have ever laid eyes on. It was old and had an aroma that can only be categorized as old desk which might be one of the best smells, but comes in second place if old books are in the running. I have an obsession when it comes to antiques.
Sitting at my desk I imagine all of the works of literature that may have been written at this desk.
We moved into our house nearly two years ago and I’ve been looking for this desk since the day we moved in. My office is rich in wood tones and has a beautiful bay window that I glance out of when I’m trying to find the perfect word while writing. Sitting at my desk I imagine all of the works of literature that may have been written at this desk. Seventy years worth personal letters, bills, budgeting, and homework has most likely been done here and now this desk is mine. What someone threw away, someone else saw as a diamond in the rough, they added polish and lacquer, and now it is all mine.
I have the pleasure of giving this desk a second chance. Thanks to my desk I started to reflect on a lifetime of second chances. Chances that I didn’t deserve or earn and yet someone saw potential in me and showed me mercy. Every single one of us has been the recipient of a second chance at some point in our lives. Over the last week I started to catalog my second chances and they are numerous. I can’t help but to think of many of them while walking into my mom and dads old house.
Now my mom is back at the house we all hoped she had finally gotten rid of. I walked up to the door and my mom met me and told me that it was bad.
About 18 months ago my mom sold her house on a rent to buy contract. At the end of the contract, the renter was unable to secure a loan. In that short amount of time she trashed the house. Now my mom is back at the house we all hoped she had finally gotten rid of. I walked up to the door and my mom met me and told me that it was bad. For the first four days we had to wear safety masks just to be in this home. We’ve gutted it because there was no other option besides an “unintentional” fire which might be suspicious and I don’t want to go to jail.
In 1992 my parents bought this house and they started remodeling it. Through the years we have done 2 serious remodels with our dad guiding us the whole way. We are remodeling for the third time and his vacancy is so palpable that the air is thick with lingering grief. He died right at the end of the hall. I held his feet and prayed for a miracle while the paramedics worked on him. He did not get the second chance that I so desperately wanted.
Tears filled my eyes as I said “dad, I’m pregnant.” Tears filled his and laughter came “I’m going to be a grandpa again!”
Almost sixteen years and nine months ago I sat beside him in the office with tears in my eyes. I needed to know that everything would be okay. I needed to know that I was going to get a second chance. Tears filled my eyes as I said “dad, I’m pregnant.” Tears filled his and laughter came “I’m going to be a grandpa again!” As a single woman on my own I needed that chance of love from my dad and he gave it freely.
Cleaning out the room that once was mine I was overwhelmed because I never wanted to walk back into this house. I couldn’t give this house a second chance. Too many painful memories surround it. Funny thing was, as I painted I started to remember all of the good times in this house.
During one of the first remodels, my cousin Chris helped to tear down a wall (You can read about Chris here). He was punching and kicking the wall and in typical fashion, Chris started yelling bizarre and hilarious things. I stood in that dining room, paint brush in hand, tears in my eyes, grateful for the second chance of a memory that was long gone.
Once I hit 18 I moved in and out of my parents house several times. No matter what reason I had for coming back home, it didn’t matter because their hearts were full of second chances, grace, and love. I think that’s what I learned most while living in that house with my parents, love was endless.
Some of us screwed up more than others and needed a little more grace. Something we knew was that grace would always be there for us.
My parents may not have had the best fashion sense, furniture, cars, or house, but they gave me and my siblings what so many people lack, love. They gave us love that was full of new starts when we screwed up. Some of us screwed up more than others. Something we knew was that grace would always be there for us. Between the three of us we have had plenty of second chances.
We are now able to breathe without the masks and soon the new carpet will be laid. My mom is getting a second chance to remember all the great times she had in this house with dad. We hope it sells soon because it’s way too much for her to take care of but for now she is thankful for the second chance to live in the house that love built.
Looking out my beautiful window I can see the buds beginning to show on my maple tree. Spring brings about new life with fresh starts. My desk welcomes me and the air in my office is a reminder of how something old and forgotten can be redeemed with a little bit of love.