Early on in our marriage, every singe piece of furniture Hubster and I owned was a hand-me-down. One of those pieces was a very large, rustic planked coffee table. And by large, I mean taking up half our living room large (yes, the living room was barely the width of a hallway, but still.) Despite the size and the unattractiveness of the table, we didn't replace it because it was (nearly) better than having nothing.
Bug loved the table. It was perfect for doing Superman leaps off of. But then along came Monkey. When the kid started walking, he fell down and hit his head so many times on the hard edges of that table, I was convinced he would never be normal. That's when I insisted that the huge wooden structure go.
We replaced it with a nice, soft, padded ottoman. Nothing fancy, just a simple piece we found at Target that also had the added benefit of extra storage. Now when Monkey fell and hit his head, at least it was against something soft (except for the walls and corners and chairs and floor...there is only so much a mother can do.)
However, our pretty little ottoman was not to last. Monkey, in his typical monkey-ish fashion, used it for teething. Bug, his previous launching pad gone, continued to use the ottoman for superhero take-offs. Just a couple years use, and the ottoman was tattered. It didn't help that Monkey, well past his teething phase, continued to pull it apart, one handful of stuffing at a time.
Being the frugal people we are, we didn't replace it. After all, it was (nearly) better than having nothing.
But finally, I couldn't take the eyesore at the center of our otherwise pretty living room. We started looking for another ottoman. We ended up going to Target and buying the exact same one. It's affordable and cute and worked well in our space.
Instead of being all saggy and tattered and shreaded with stuffing hanging out at all sides, the ottoman is now clean and shiny and pretty again.
I had forgotten how nice it looked before kids.
Then I realized something...
The ottoman before kids...
The ottoman after kids...
I feel pretty much the same way.