Sunday, March 22, 2009

Gift of love

Friday 5:30pm. The night shift begins....again, but I'm thinking this is close to the end.

All day long, we carried load after load of resource books to my new office, basement, small one-room upstairs studio.....where will all this go?! After spending the morning painting at the designer house, I must admit that my energy as well as mood were down. I'm darn tired of all this laborious shuffling, outfitting, squeezing, rearranging, and making miracles happen!

Looking around the store, it seemed overwhelming at this hour. How in the world would I get the store looking good, all things re merchandised from the intermingled new things that had been displaced from "making room", find homes for the 10 loads of resource books in my personal office, AND, stay sane and productive? I wasn't feeling too positive, to say the least. I knew I was close to the end of all this, but there seemed still, an insurmountable task ahead for the night. I set myself to the work ahead.

Sneelock was there (somewhere), adding new shelving, removing existing fixtures that needed new homes, here and there. As I worked and dinner crossed my mind, Sneelock came into the room and I asked him what he was doing? He told me with a certain degree of accomplishment that he and Ryan (my cabinetmaker son) had just gotten my design table in my car. May I remind you that this table is the old library table from the New York Library. It is vintage, 12 feet (yes, really!) long, and 50" wide. There are drawers all the way down on both sides. It was no easy task to disassemble the table and took quite some time to do. I LOVE this table. I believe that I have noted it several times in the sorting documentation, and always with fondness. Sneelock has no attachment to it whatsoever! I insisted on storing it for my final retirement home. I can just picture the entire family and all the grand kids around that table! Fred had been dreading the task of taking it down, not to mention the unhappy task of storing it--against his wishes.

Now, picture this. I'm sure that Fred thought that I would be pleased that one more monumental task had been completed, bringing us closer to the end. Instead, this move on his part brought me to a heap on the floor in tears. I can't begin to tell you the disappointment I felt, as I had wanted to photograph the table "at rest" I guess you could say. Under normal circumstances, that table could be found with 3 or 4 huge projects laid out on the top-fabrics, paints, wall coverings, furniture layouts---generally, I was the only one who held the key to the puzzle thereon. The thought of a photo of the table empty seemed to bring me to a point where I could let go of that space. When I tell you I lost it, well, that is an understatement. I attribute much of my reaction to the stressful days, weeks, and months, and the emotional state that I found myself in this late Friday night. I burst into an outrage that I'm sure Sneelock was not expecting. "How could you do that?! I told you I wanted to take a picture of it! I can't believe it, I just wanted a picture of it!! Why didn't you tell me you were going to take it down?! I just can't stand this any longer, I can't do this anymore....." Well, you get the picture! For some reason, this was the final straw , and I melted into a pile on the floor and simply sobbed.

There was no one there, of course, and I let the tears flow. I had felt like doing this on multiple occasions, but now, it happened! Fred quietly disappeared and I let out my emotional reaction freely. After about 15 minutes, I got myself up and began to put myself together again to face the work ahead. I felt better. Fred had noticeably left me to recover, without comment.

Within the next little while, he appeared again. He had been gone for some time and I queried him regarding what he had been doing.

Sneelock had put the table back together again.

He and Ryan painstakingly took it our of my car, unsecuring the over sized load, reassembled it, and prepared it for my final photo. I burst into another rush of tears, as I realized what a sacrifice it had been for him to do this for me, his unconditional love for me being so real with this gesture. He did it for me. He did it because I had been so disappointed. He did it because he loves me.

I cannot retell the story without more tears. Sneelock. He is a wonderful man. I love him.

Here it is. My beautiful 12 foot table, drawers missing. Also missing since the last move, about 4 years ago, are fabulous horseshoe shaped stretchers that will someday be reinstalled along the floor. The table means nothing to Sneelock, but I do. I am a lucky woman.

Another closeup

It may be many years before this monetary thing that I love has a place in my life, but I will remember often and with great tenderness this loving gesture from Fred.


shannon said...

This is a very touching story and makes me adore Fred all the more...
I told him so yesterday--

I can see why you love that desk--it's so cool that it came from the New York library!--I love things with a story!

Jill said...

Wow, he is the Sneelock of all Sneelocks!

michelle said...

Oh. Oh..... I love that man, too! What a loving gesture. I'm not sure I'm up to the level of his patience yet! And what a table. I love it too. I think every grandmother should have a 12' table. From the NY Library.

Denise said...

That is unconditional love, for sure, and a good lesson for me. You've gotta love that Sneelock!