Here’s an excerpt:
A long time back, almost 27 years ago, my husband bought me a rocking chair. We were expecting our first baby. I was looking forward to refinishing the rocker. It would be one of my household “nesting” projects as we prepared for the new baby. I used a maple stain and a satin finish on the rocker’s wood. The chair was a fixture in our home all through our childrearing years. Over time it rocked a lot of babies and a lot of guests who visited our home. Until recently.
The rocker developed a small split in one of the natural curved seams of its wood. Eventually one of the braces split and the back support broke. Sadly, it rendered the chair unstable and beyond repair.
A little part of my heart broke along with the rocker, as it seemed to signal the end of an era. With our children grown now, and our youngest son is in college, I’m already pretty far from the days of little ones wanting hear a story or waiting to be rocked and held before naptime.
I could not help but notice that the rocker’s demise coincided very closely with my entering menopause… another end of an era where motherhood is concerned.
Both of these changes, the rocker’s demise, and the menopause, have rocked me a bit, if you’ll forgive the obvious pun.
Somehow I thought the rocker would be with me as I aged. I’m going to miss the therapeutic soothing of my rock-a-bye chair, but I miss a more youthful and vigorous body even more. Yet I’m learning to be more comfortable with the woman I am now, and not worry so much about losses or gains. Midlife has its unique challenges, but it also has new blessings to offer me.
Learning to let go is one of the primary tasks of motherhood, and it comes to us in many different ways, even if we do get sentimental about a chair or certain phases of life now and then…