Baby Grand

I don’t have many things left from my childhood. I have an old mirror that sits in our bedroom that I have owned since childhood – which I hate. It rotates on its stand, allowing fingers to get pinched, kids to get injured, resulting in me cursing at it, swearing to destroy it regularly.

There is a picture of my mother in an antique frame in the front hall.

There are several old civil war and antique books in our library. There is also an old secretary in that same library,

And then there is the baby grand piano. Now the piano is not really old. It is a stand-in for the one that was my mothers prized possession. We had a Baldwin baby grand from before I can remember – something that meant more to my mother than any other possession she owned. She kept it when we couldn’t afford any other thing we had. It meant so much to her...and I never asked why – but I just knew it had sentimental value. I knew by the way she kept it clean, by the way she moved it to every house we lived in, by the way she smiled at it every time she walked by.

After my mom died, I tried to hang onto the piano, I really did. But I had nowhere to store it. I lived in an apartment barely big enough for my husband, our dog and my daughter. I looked into storage places. They were all so expensive. I had to have a climate controlled facility in order to prevent the wood splitting. There was nowhere to put a piano the size of a small car in an apartment. At least not one I could afford. It was difficult, but I finally gave it to my mother's church - so that someone would get some use out of it – vowing to replace it as soon as we had a house of our own and room to put one.

As soon as we moved to Texas I immediately bought a baby grand piano to replace the one we had given away. We could not afford a Baldwin and went with a less expensive option, vowing to get a Baldwin when we could afford it. I will still do that someday.

When my husband and I divorced, it was the one piece of furniture I demanded that I keep – even though I was moving into a one bedroom apartment. I was not going to fall into the trap of giving away something like that again – only to have to wait 10 years to replace it again. So – I lugged it around for years even though I really didn’t have room for it.

And here is the real comedy in all of this…I don’t really even play the piano.

I took lessons for a very long time as a child. And I am a master at right-hand-piano-playing. I can read sheet music. I can play the melody. I can hold my own a little. But I can really not play the piano as it is meant to be played and the damn instrument is wasted on me. The whole thing is a glorified piece of furniture in our home. It serves as a trick-or-treat stand on Halloween. A candle holding fixture around Christmas, and a dust-collecting device the rest of the year.

The cats do like making paw prints on it quite a bit. And the boys enjoy banging out a sonata or two – but overall it is merely a thing that sits in the room intended for a dining room. And I still intend to upgrade this piece of furniture to a Baldwin - which is insane, but it means something to me. And I guess that is what matters, right?