Friday, July 20, 2012

On Top of His Dresser

For some reason, as a little girl, when I'd go into my parents' bedroom to drop off something, I'd stop and examine the surface contents of my father's dresser. 

It was crowded with oddities, but they made me smile.  My eyes would look slowly over each item, and they brought me peace.

My father's dresser surface was totally unlike the surface of the dressers of Mom and me.  Mom and I had pretty displays of jewelry and candles and white linen doilies on our dressers.  Dad had nothing like that.

Instead, there was the plastic Batman bank I gave him, earned with UPC bar codes from about three boxes of Captain Crunch cereal.  Taped to Batman's head (so he wouldn't get lost) was the little plastic ant that I used to hide for his surprise discovery.

Also on Dad's dresser was lots of coins, a few paperclips, a tie clip, a pencil, and a pair of cufflinks.  But there was also the glass barometer I gave him for his birthday, a Brown Scapular I gave him, plus the flashlight I gave him for Christmas (when I was in first grade) that looked like a fat yellow crayon.

Near his wallet was the fake ID card I created for him to use in "Tom's Olympic Weightlifting Gym," which was really just our basement.  Behind all these stood the cardboard model rockets that we used to assemble and launch outside when I was a kid.

But perhaps the nicest thing of all was the framed photograph he had of Mom and me.  It was dusty just like everything else, but that was because it hadn't moved in years and WOULDN'T be moving any time soon, since we were so important to him.

Last night, I found myself pausing to look at my husband's dresser.  The same delightful feeling of peace washed over me.  His was a random mix of meaningful things, too, just like my Dad's.  The sloppy, unplanned collection of stuff made me smile again.

There was a pack of church envelopes, paperwork from his latest purchase from Tiffany's, a small souvenir from walking The Way of St. James in Spain, the statue of Mary that I gave him, the statue of the Holy Family that he gave me, the German beer stein my parents gave him, the Brown Scapular I gave him, a Rosary blessed by the pope, a catalog of Boston Red Sox stuff, and his favorite Christmas nutcracker that gets to stay out all year.

But, sitting most prominently amid the stuff was a dusty picture of us.  It hasn't moved in the first year of our marriage and looked like it WOULDN'T be moving anytime soon.  :)