A few days ago I noticed some new artwork on the dining room table. And I literally mean on the table. Apparently a certain 4-year-old who lives in my house got a little wild with the markers. (Or maybe it was his big sister--she's been known to wield a marker or two herself.)
Then yesterday on that same table I discovered several well-attached stickers. Their decorative placement belied their unintentionality.
Anyway, as every parent knows, property damage in a house with a preschooler is not news. But I couldn't help taking note of my non-reaction to these most recent defacings. The marker is still there; I haven't even bothered to try to wash it off. The sticker was met with a yawn and a mental note to return to it later in the day (a little fingernail work did the trick).
There was a day that I bemoaned every little new piece of damage to house and home. But lately, I find that I just don't care much anymore. Reflecting on why, I think there are several factors in play. First, I would like to think that with age I am becoming wiser and more mature. After all, it's just stuff. In the grand scheme of life and death, what's the big deal?
Second, as I look at the items suffering abuse, I have to admit that their age and condition also contributes to my apathy. The dining room table in question is on its last legs (there's a pun for you, Elephant's Child!). The upholstery is peeling away and the chair backs are collapsing from the seats. What's a green mark or two?
I am hoping a new dining room table is in my future. On the other hand, a new dining room table means a renewed concern for protecting it, and I'm not sure I have the energy or passion to do so anymore. So maybe that dining room table is best postponed until we're through the most property-threatening years. (No, scratch that. If I get a new table, I will find the energy.)
You know what I find myself looking forward to lately? That day in the future that I will be able to be as blase about the newest wrinkles on my face as I am about the latest dings to my aging furniture. Do you think that day will ever come?