chair

 

When I was a kid, we had in our home a chair sort of like this one. It was unpainted, that raw golden wicker colour, with hand made corduroy cushions sewn into the seat. My mom had held onto it from her teen days, and when I was 4 or 5 it was hung up in our unfinished basement.

This chair hung from a sturdy chain on a hook that was screwed into a sturdy beam. It hung about a foot of the ground, which left a good 4-5 feet of chain on which to swing. To kids this meant (of course) that we had an indoor swing.

One fateful day my sisters and I got it in our heads that it would be super duper cool to swing as high as we could in the chair. Maybe we could even touch the ceiling with our toes! As the tallest but not strongest, I sat in the chair while my older sister pushed me. Higher. Higher. Almost there…

Remember how I mentioned this chair hung from a hook? Well…hooks aren’t closed loops. The chain slipped right off the hook and the chair and I plummeted to the concrete floor. Thanks to laws of gravity, I landed on my front with the chair on top of me. My next memory is of stumbling out of the basement looking down at my favourite sweater in dismay as blood ruined it beyond hope (it had concentric circles of Pandas holding hands around the world…). I was probably wailing but don’t actually remember experiencing any pain, probably thanks to shock. What followed is a blur, but strange things seemed important to me: I got to ride in the neighbours car (as she drove us to a dental specialist so my mom could sit in the back with me), the dentist was really friendly, and I got to pick out a ring (!!) even though it wasn’t my dentist! I chose purple.

Not once did it seem significant to me that I was loosing my two front teeth. That realization didn’t hit until I got TWO dollars under my pillow the next morning, which of course was totally worth it. Thanks tooth fairy! In the two years that followed before my adult teeth grew in, I don’t ever remember being self-conscious, uncomfortable, or concerned by my lack of front incisors. It was, after all, a great story.

Object: Basket Chair

Lesson: Focusing on the positive is not only beneficial, its probably what you did before you grew up learned to be cynical.