It was just a black and white picture of a table sitting in the middle of the room, posted for that Facebook gimmick: seven days, seven pics of your life, no words, no people. To me, though, it was so much more than just a table.
It was the first table I purchased for my kitchen in the house I moved out of a year ago to move into a new one with my second husband. It was the table I sat with my two kids at as a single mom. It was the table where we celebrated early morning birthday celebrations, kicked off with cake and candles, where I had rushed conversations with girlfriends about life and relationships and things of the deep while noise and chaos ensued in the dining room where our kids ate. It was the table where a dear friend and I ate dinner together just a couple of months before she passed away suddenly. It was the table where my kids and I shared my lazy-day lasagna on the evening my kids met the man who would later become their stepdad.
But it was time to haul it off to Goodwill as its purpose had been served. The finish was wearing off in spots, and the legs of one of the chairs bore chew marks from our dog’s puppy days. We don’t need that table anymore. So instead of memorializing it by stowing it away in a crowded closet to collect dust and cobwebs, I will post my tribute to it here.
I think we hold onto things because we’re not done letting go. We stockpile stuff because we’re still grieving what is finished. I took a picture, instead. But I must admit I had to keep from choking up just a little. . . . because I’m not over it. I’m, rather, getting on with it. Life moves on. We don’t just rearrange the furniture. We buy new furniture. We quite literally, as I did last November 25, move on, around, and with our grief about the things that are done.
And then we set the table for something different.