Sunday, August 7, 2011

"On our own, looking out of the hall window onto the garden and the gathering darkness, we can slowly resume contact with a more authentic self, who was there waiting in the wings for us to end our performance at work. Our submerged playful sides will derive encouragement from the painted flowers on either side of the door. The value of gentleness will be confirmed by the delicate folds of the curtains. Our interest in a modest, tender-hearted kind of happiness will be fostered by the unpretentious raw wooden floorboards. The materials around us will speak to us of the highest hopes we have for ourselves. In this setting, we can come close to a state of mind marked by integrity and vitality. We can feel inwardly liberated. We can, in a profound sense, return home."

When you're going through major life changes, identity crises usually accompany them. (Married to single, country to city, 20s to 30s, woman to mother-woman.) I thought I liked Swedish style decor the best when I was in my mid-20s. I'm a romantic, but Shabby Chic was too frilly for me; I like more color, on the one hand, and more simple lines on the other. Up until recently I was too down, and down on myself, to care, but putting together my guest room has revitalized my sense of "Yeah, that's me, and that's okay." (That's my guest room up there, and I'm proud of it. I got those lights for Christmas 8 years ago, found the chenille bedspread 6 years ago, got the pillow shams two years ago on sale, got the mattress for free from a friend, splurged on the curtain rod from West Elm, and got the chair for $10. PROUD.)