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Heirloom Rocking Chair

June 10, 2008

This is the sad story of an heirloom rocking chair. At least to me, it’s sad. My mom received this rocking chair from a friend whose son is gay. Her logic was that she couldn’t pass this rocking chair to her own son because she was not expecting to have grandchildren, this rocking chair is ideal for enjoying with grandchildren, and gay people don’t have children. So my mom’s friend wanted it to go to us because, logically, we’ve gone the “traditional family values” route and the rocking chair belongs in a home such as ours.

This “logic” makes me sad because I assume an heirloom should be given to the next generation without the person having to meet “standard” qualifications. Her son could have used it to display a doll or a teddy bear, or whatever! Why is there even the assumption that gay people are childless? I don’t know the whole story. Maybe he told his mom outright to give it away to someone else. Maybe his home is decorated in an ultra-modern style and this rocking chair wouldn’t fit in. Or maybe giving it to us was the best solution to a really complicated dilemma. I choose to imagine he is disappointed that he couldn’t inherit his own childhood rocking chair because he didn’t live up to his mom’s expectations. That’s the spin I put on it.

The cover was made by my mom because I was worried about little fingers getting stuck between the wooden slats. We traced a pattern by hand and designed it to make the chair a little more child-friendly. My mom also bought this pillow that asks, “Have you hugged an abuela (grandmother) today?” I hope that my mom’s friend is not bitter about those hugs. Having grandchildren is really wonderful, and I guess she gave this rocking chair to us because she knew that. So, maybe this is not a sad story after all.

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wooden rocking chair

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wooden rocking chair

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8 Comments
  1. June 10, 2008 3:25 pm

    i’m with you in why the woman assumes that her gay son will have no use for the chair. My sister has a 15 year old daughter.

    i hope that it wasn’t like that. i’m hoping that her son kindly declined her offer of the chair because he’s chosen not to have a child.

    It is a lovely looking chair.
    i haven’t hugged my ava (grandmother in portuguese) for a whole year almost!

  2. June 10, 2008 4:13 pm

    Adorable chair.

    And yeah—who says you can’t have some small furniture in the house for the magical elves who come to clean at night if you’ve been really really good?

  3. Lofter permalink
    June 10, 2008 5:56 pm

    It is sad that people tend to apply pre-conditions to such personal and sentimental things. Then again, it’s not about the chair at all… it’s about the woman and her son. Nothing hurts more – even when you’re grown up – than seeing a look of disappointment on your parent’s face. I hope her son simply didn’t want the chair and suggested it be given to someone who could get some good use out of it.
    The cover is great, and an excellent idea (having had experience pulling little fingers from between the slats of chairs before)! I’m thinking it goes well with the bunny lamp, too!

    Oh, and WWB… where do I sign up for those magical elves who come to clean at night? I’ve been really, really good… just a bit lazy, as well! πŸ˜€

  4. June 11, 2008 8:05 am

    Yea! It has the cool fabric you talked about! I have a little rocker like that, too. And since I don’t have human babies, I hope to pass it along to a niece’s kid someday. But whatever. Some people just aren’t attached to ‘stuff’.

  5. June 11, 2008 9:35 am

    I’m going to hope that he has an ultra modern theme going in his place and chose not to have it. That makes me feel better. I can’t imagine giving a family heirloom to another person over my kids. Regardless of what they do with it. So thats why I’m choosing to believe that he opted to not have it. It makes me feel better inside.

    I love the cover too. Just a crafty little woman aren’t you? My rocking chair had a dust cover hahaha. It worked well.

  6. June 14, 2008 11:18 am

    I really love the circus toile, and the story – thanks!

  7. June 16, 2008 1:43 am

    I support anti-discrimination rocking-chair bequethment rights.

  8. June 16, 2008 2:18 pm

    c, I hope you get the chance to hug her soon. πŸ™‚ thank you for the sweet comment.

    westwardbound, I’m like lofter and want to know where is the sign-up sheet for those elves?

    lofter, you are right about disappointment. I don’t know if there was any disappointment in the real story. I wanted to prevent any slat-related injuries, but rocking chairs are dangerous regardless of being covered! But it does match the lamp so at least I can justify it that way. πŸ˜‰

    CuriousC, you are right. Everyone has their personal perspective and decides where to put the emphasis. I think your plan sounds great! Do you like the pipe-smoking elephant? Scandalous, I tell ya.

    Chris, my mom was glad to help me bring my crafty ideas into reality. She is the seamstress. Your explanation makes me feel better, too, because then it would be his decision.

    princessedamame, yay! You’re back around and I’m so glad.

    johnny, it’s all part of the “agenda,” as you must recognize.

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