The ceiling heights were at least twelve feet high. Fine crafted millwork graced the windows and framed doorways. Above each door were transom windows, permenately caulked and painted shut. Sitting at a long, antique pine table, I waited for the divorce mediator to come back in to ‘our side’. I looked up to the transom windows, one faced the front reception area (which was probably the old grand foyer to the Victorian house turned law office) and the other gave light from the front porch. Not much could be seen through the wavy glass – just the beaded board ceilings. I began to think…
At around age twelve, I started collecting things for my hope chest. Now, I didn’t literally have a wooden chest, just started gathering and setting aside some lovely pieces of depression glass and crocheted doilies. They were things which would be used to one day set a pretty table, my table, in my home.
If that twelve year old girl had been able to turn her proverbial hope chest up on its side and stood tippy-toed on it, to peer through the transom window of the closed door of her future life, would she have liked what she saw? Would she have been content with the choice her heart would make just a short eight years later? Eleven years after that first Louisa patterned piece of glass was bought she would become a mother. Many joyous experiences would come her way, but great sorrow and a wanting to give up would splash forcefully in amongst those happy times. Happiness is fleeting, it never stays for long. Not the things offered up in this world. Would the good have been greater or at least enough to endure the bad, if she could have seen her future? Would that twelve year old girl have shaken her head and jumped down from her perch and said, “No, thank you!”
That twelve year old girl’s ideals still stand. I still believe in Biblical marriage. I believe in enduring love. I believe in family and friends and that both can be both. There’s a progression to life’s events. Had I not married the one I did, I wouldn’t have had my three sons. Had I not had them, I would not have my sweet six year old grandaughter, nor would I be anticipating the birth of my first grandson in February. I cannot imagine my life without these gifts.
The music group Switchfoot has a song called Souvenirs. It sounds a little bitter, till the very last line. Those ending words turn the negativity into something beautifully positive. They say, “I wouldn’t trade them for anything -my souvenirs”.
I’m so glad that I didn’t know my future. The good does outweigh the bad.