As I ran across this daily prompt, I was sitting in our family den gazing at the entertainment center. This one piece of furniture is a synopsis of my life. A representation of my past, my present and my future. On it sits small representation of who I am and where I have come from.
The television sits in the center of arrangement. Sadly, I think electronic are too often the center of family days. So many summer hours wasted in electronic interaction. This room, at one time, was the apex of our families interactions. As the kids got older, televisions and electronic were added to there room. Their maturation has shifted their interested. Their personalities are developing and thus it is harder to gather them around a single type of entertainment.
A Wii sits in the entertainment center. Many afternoons I come home and the three are engaged in a sibling competitive game. The television maybe the center of this unit; however, it does not definite our life, my life. It’s just a piece of our culture that, if not monitored, strongly influences our down time
Last night, during a friendly game of Favorites, I asked Shandra, “What is your favorite room?” She smiled and indicated the master bedroom. “Why?” Many a night, around nine, we gather for quite, girl-time. Three or four of us laughing, being silly, just relaxing and enjoying each other. Family. That represents life.
What I enjoy most about the entertainment center are the articles gently tucked around the edges. These keepsakes are the story of my past, future and present. This memorabilia reflects life from so many angles. All pieces simple, yet meaningful.
When I was a junior in high school, I had the pleasure of participating in a student, summer, exchange program. I opened an atlas and my finger hit Sweden. Random, yes, but a summer of learning and growth perused. Later, I married a man with a rich Swedish heritage. The Dala horse collection once sat in his own home. Lutefisk and Kringle take center stage on our Christmas table. Our heritage shapes our life in so many ways.
The New Testaments, leaning against the shelf, is a gift given to my husband the day he was born. It symbolizes, to me, the importance of religion in my family’s life. Next to it sits a church, which encloses a rosary that belonged to my maternal grandfather. The church once belonged to my paternal grandmother. How I enjoyed my summer visits with the grandparents. Each home was rich in its own way. A place to be a kid, to relax and enjoy the company of those who shaped my parent’s life.
A single photo has found a place of honor on our entertainment center. This photo of my children draws me back to a simpler time. When worries seemed simpler and play was a constant source of my enjoyment. It is amazing how quickly they grow. Tucked next to this remembrance is the cake topper from my wedding. Have I really been married for over thirty years? Our relationships define us in so many ways. They shape our thoughts and drive our life plans.
When my great-grandmother passed away, I was allowed to take a treasure or two from her belongings. I selected a simple pocket watch. It belonged to her husband., my great-grandfather. It is dated circa 1930. The story of our lives is marked by time and those who came before us. My great grandma’s husband died when she was very young. He was quarantined at the time of his death. Plague had taken over their town. My great grandma was around for : the first car, the first Television, the first phone, the first airplane…… What a story her life was? She passed when Coleman was a toddler. I had the honor of knowing her and loving her. She, I miss.
So you see, although the center of the entertainment center is a Television, what surrounds it has made me who I am. Although electronics are the center of many in todays society. It is what happens around the entertainment centers that defines life.