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Stories

Stories, observations, and reflections from a life of raising boys

#4

Jerome de Joya

As I clean the “mystery goop” from my sectional couch I can’t help but reflect on how much our priorities have changed since having children. The condition of our once spotless leather sectional with ottoman gives a good indication. I often talk about my couch, I think because I see it as a symbol of my previous life. When my husband and I moved in together we both dreamed of having a big sectional couch. I pictured us lying in front of the TV, cuddling up. I think he pictured surround sound and Die Hard, but it didn’t matter. We went to the furniture store and immediately were sucked in by the salesman and the giant leather couch. This would be the biggest purchase we ever made together at that point. We went home and thought about it. We went back the next day and signed up for the store credit card to begin making payments on our magnificent couch. When it was delivered we laid on it feet to feet it seemed so big. We admired it all the time.

Fast-forward a few years and the couch is worn. There are scratches and rubs. Springs not so springy and cushions stretched. The salesman said it would be with us our entire life. He forgot the, “Unless you have children” part. But as I clean up the living room after the boys are in bed, and pull the train tracks and cheerios out of the couch cushions, I stare at the couch and think to myself, “It’s the best purchase we ever made”. This is no ordinary couch. It is a massive pirate ship with a plank that jets out over the open sea. It is a mountain where the Little Engine found out he could. It has served as a school bus, a dinosaur, and a bouncy house. It’s a cave and a fortress. A safe zone, and an unexpected nap. It’s the baby’s favorite spot to hold onto while walking along and testing his legs. It took us a year to pay off the couch. It was a steal. Looking back we should have paid far more for this magnificent couch.