NORMAN — Something happens when you get older. Even though you don’t really expect to, or even want to sometimes, you tend to grow up a bit.
I remember my first adult apartment. I had no idea what I really needed. I’d lived in furnished housing for years. First, my parent’s house. Then I downgraded to furnished college dives. But once I got my first real job, it was expected of me to purchase furniture.
Living with a limited income, the first couch was a futon that came from one of those big box discount stores. I don’t know if any of you have had the pleasure of sitting on metal furniture with a thin piece of fabric and poorly constructed stuffing, but it’s never been described as high society.
From there, I managed to grow and blossom into furniture I found in a garage sale. If memory serves me correctly, I wrote a check to a little old lady for $125. That included a sofa and a chair.
Sounds like a bargain to some, I’m sure. And I suppose it was since that was cheaper than the previously mentioned futon. Not to talk ill of a couch that really did nothing to deserve it, but that futon might have been a tad more comfortable and attractive than my so-called garage sale find.
Over the years, I moved that couch around to about a dozen different apartments. I learned to love it, despite it’s negatives, but then I got married. Apparently, when you get married, you realize things about yourself that you didn’t know — things that your love so graciously points out.
My husband learned that he snored in his sleep. I learned that this couch that I had toted around for years just no longer was cutting the mustard.
About a year after we were married, my husband and I went furniture shopping — at a real store, one where everything in it was new. It was an exciting time and we dwelled over our purchase for hours. And hours. And hours more. Bless our poor sales person for her patience with a couple of thrifty newlyweds.
We finally managed to settle on a couch, a chair and an ottoman. That was eight years ago and our first real adult, serious, expensive purchase together. Thankfully, as I’ve gotten older, my taste and my standards for comfort have gotten better.
Last week, we passed the couch and the ottoman on to the next generation — our nephew and his young family. It gave our hearts such pride that they even wanted our hand-me-downs. And it’s nice to know our first couch is in the loving care of family.
Leaving the old couch with them was hard. That couch had seen many a lazy Sunday afternoon. It was good for taking naps on and it was a perfect snuggle spot for dogs and husbands.
Many times that couch healed the sick, comforted the sad and became a cozy resting spot for the tired, but I know I’ve left it in good hands. And I’ve been told I get supervised visits, occasionally, if I call ahead of time.
For the second time in our lives, my husband and I got to pick out a new sofa — again, at one of those fancy furniture stores where everything is new and expensive.
We are grateful that life has taken us to a new level where we can afford such fancy offerings in life, like leather. This couch has yet to live up to the standards of the old one. It’s only had a few naps and, for the moment anyway, no dogs are allowed. I’m sure that rule will get bent a bit as time goes on.
This couch has big cushions to fill. I hope it’s up for the challenge and realizes that it’s got a tough job ahead.