DEAR GLIDER: A Chat With An Inanimate Object
"Hello my dear friend Glider. I just wanted you to know how important you have been to me and my entire family. During the warm weather months, you have brought friends and family together as the focus of many photo opportunities we’ve shared. I love that about you. Some of my favorite photos of my Mom are when she was centered here in the middle with her seven grandchildren surrounding her.
You have held many special beings throughout your 30+ years as the focal point of our family’s outdoor patio. Even though your cushions are original, worn and cracking, you remain a familiar and comfortable gathering place. The little creek sounds you make when gliding continue to this day. Even WD-40 won’t take them away.
I think Chrissy, or was it Patti, had her “first kiss” while sitting upon you. How thrilling that must have been. It was exciting for me to watch from my bedroom window above.
And oh, when Dad would come home after one too many at the Last Stop and Mom would tell him “if you are gonna smoke, go out on the patio.” He’d plop his weary body on you, eventually falling asleep until the next time nature called.
Do you remember when my dog Buttons was nearing his final days. I would sit with him for hours just rocking back and forth. When his tremors would slow down and he’d finally fall asleep, I’d take a break leaving him in your care after I placed the baby gate underneath you to keep him from falling.
There was the time when you comforted Aunt Helen and Uncle Hank as they waited patiently while Dad kept going way back to the garden to fetch more tomatoes and cucumbers and zucchini for them to take home to their family. The table in front of you could hardly hold all the fresh veggies Dad always shared.
Many, many birthday candles have been wished upon right in front of you. I don’t think you realize how special you have been to so many visitors over the years. You are the highlight of our outdoor space as you continue to create memories for all of us.
For me, peace and serenity exude from your stern metal frame allowing me time to reflect, learn and grow. I kind of selfishly count on you at times to give me the proper answers to dilemmas in my life. And you have, you have helped me through some rough times. And my writing, gosh, so many pieces that I have scribbled over the years have come to life right here with you.
On occasion when Mom was still with us, she and Dad had conversations about replacing you. They felt you might be tired and worn out. But they never did. They had thoughts of simply replacing your cushions at one point. But they could never find any that would fit just right. And now I don’t think anyone ever will. You have since proven your strength and endurance for many lifetimes.
Do you watch those birds in the nests above all day long? I hate it when they come and do their business on you. But you handle it quite well. And you have shielded many chipmunks and other critters from Mother Nature no doubt.
Grandma, who lived to be almost 103, faithfully sat upon you when the weather was warm enough for her to be outside. She would whistle adorable tunes and witness nature unfold in our back yard as she gently swayed back and forth. Do you remember Grandma loving to scratch others backs? Her hands, her touch were so special. Any time someone, anyone would sit next to her, automatically her arm would rise to begin giving a back scratch that was filled with love. I miss those days, don’t you?
Recently, during July 4th weekend this year, the entire family gathered to do some much needed work at our family’s home. Still, you were the center of attention. I feel you always will be.
You know in late November when we cover you with the blue plastic tarp, that it is only to protect you. Never think we forgot about you. We always know you are a constant in our lives. As you hibernate for the winter, it allows you to get the rest you need for the very next outdoor gathering every spring.
The only thing I ask of you is that you continue to comfort our next generations. Everyone would be seriously lost without your unconditional support. I thank you! And I’m really glad, my friend, that we found time to have this chat.”
This is Sharyn's Slant