Do you know the Old English poem “The Dream of the Rood“? You should. It recounts the imagined thoughts of the wood that became the cross (rood) on which our Lord was crucified. I’m not going to say anything more about that poem, other than “read it.”
I only refer to it because tomorrow we are moving. This morning I was in our bedroom to disassemble the mirror from Paula’s dresser, and I started thinking about how many times I’ve had to take these things apart and put them together. And that led me to reflect on the history of our bedroom furniture.
In 1984 Paula was pregnant with our first child and we were preparing to settled down. We bought a tiny house (900 square feet) in Little Rock, bought a Honda Civic wagon, and a set of bedroom furniture that we thought might be part of the family for a long time. A few months later in November our bed welcomed Nicholas into his first home. In April 1986 it welcomed Karen as well.
But in 1986 I was having some ministerial inclinations, and we sold our house and packed up our furniture and headed to Jackson, Mississippi, where I studied at Reformed Theological Seminary. As our babies became toddlers a tradition developed, particularly on Saturday mornings: Nicholas and Karen would climb into our bed and the four of us would wrestle and snuggle and just enjoy each other.
When I graduated in 1989 we moved to Shreveport for a six-month stint, then in November to Las Cruces, New Mexico. In 1993 Kristian was actually born in our bed, with the assistance of a midwife. Our bed similarly welcomed Ethan into the world in 1995. And on my birthday in 1994 (I believe), about 5:00 in the morning, Paula and I were awakened by an unusual sound coming from our backyard, just outside the glass doors next to our bed. I jumped up “to see what was the matter,” and on pulling back the curtains I saw ten or so people from our church standing outside, singing Las Mañanitas. I opened the door and they paraded through the room, each giving me a flower, and they continued out the front door of the house, singing all the way.
In 1997 I took a position at Dell, and our furniture followed me to Austin as 1997 turned to 1998. During the next ten years our family was anchored and our bedroom furniture had its longest rest to date. I think it only moved when we replaced the carpet with tile.
Having an obvious tendency to restlessness, I left Dell in 2007 and we put our bedroom furniture on a container, in which it made it’s way to New Orleans, then on board some ship that carried it across the Atlantic. I can’t recall it’s port of entry, but from there it traveled across the Western Nations toward its new home, right in the heart of Europe, Slovakia. And this Sunday will mark seven years in Slovakia–and our furniture will be resting in its third home.
I suspect it will not be the last.