The perfect chair is a huge rocker recliner with no arms. It has a rounded, papasan-style seat with the high back of a typical recliner. It sports a chocolate brown, easy-to-wipe microfiber surface. Its footrest is easy to raise and lower, and it rocks with a gentle, squeakless motion that bestows a restful comfort on children and googies alike.
Because it has no arms, its spacious seat can cradle a googie, two grandkids, and a bowl of popcorn expertly when there is a Disney movie playing across the room. Or, replace the popcorn with a third kid and a book, and you have all you need for some serious story reading. Or, send all the kids upstairs to play while you rock the baby to sleep. There is very little that the perfect chair can't do. It is magical.
"Good luck," you must be thinking. "A chair this perfect is impossible to find." And, it would seem, you are right. Tonight's Google search yielded no photos of the perfect chair. That's why I am especially grateful that it sits in my family room, occupying the corner like some majestic throne:
The perfect chair came to live with us almost six years ago, just about the time Sooby, the oldest of our five grandkids, was born. Since then it has performed its duties, hazardous and otherwise, like an ultimately devoted and selfless servant. Its forgiving surface has graciously wiped clean of any substance capable of emanating from a child's body. It is known around here as "Googie's chair," and it is like a member of the family.
This is not to say there are no signs of wear on our old friend--quite the contrary. Some of its noble seams are showing evidence of stress in places, and it has begun to protest our sometimes vigorous rocking with the slightest little squeak. But overall, the perfect chair has been a trooper, and, if I could, I would give it a medal for meritorious service.
The unique design of the chair also serves me well when I sit or lie in it alone, recovering from a marathon day with one or more of the kids. I can stretch out with the footrest, cross my legs up Indian-fashion, or lie sideways with my legs dangling over the side. The perfect chair accommodates my every comfort whim.
That's why I have started to worry a little about what I will do when we finally wear it out. After all, how much battery can a chair, even a brave soldier like this one, be expected to survive?
It was this distressing thought that precipitated tonight's premature, casual online search for a replacement. In the event that the grandkid total does not stop at five, I want to be secure in the knowledge that there are reserves waiting to be called into action if needed.
With the arrival of daylight savings time today, bedtime is coming early tonight. Beenie, almost a year old now, will be coming tomorrow for our Monday together. He will get here bright and early, and the new day will be like a present for me to unwrap and enjoy.
And so, we will gather up his bottle and binky and bib and blanket and head downstairs to begin our day in the perfect chair. Stay with me, old friend. Beenie and I are counting on you for another perfect day.