The Closet Door


The couple who bought our house doesn’t have kids.  Maybe that’s why they chose to paint the closet door, our family growth chart that spanned twenty-five years.  To their credit, the Mrs. sent a message through our realtor: Did I want to take a photo of the door before she painted?

I already had. Nevertheless, it was a thoughtful gesture.

But I still felt sad.  Sad that the record of the kids would be erased.  Just last summer, I had added our two granddaughters and their cousin, marking their heights with pencil as they stood as tall as possible.

If I had bought a house with a marked up closet door, would I have done the same?  Or would I have studied the names, and mused over them.  Those faint pencil scratches represent noisy, busy kids, who crashed down the stairs, slid on the bamboo floors.  Argued, laughed a lot, left wet towels on the wooden chairs, claimed the last piece of leftover pizza.  One slept on the floor with his head in the closet.  One wrapped twinkle lights in her iron bedstead.

I think I would have left it untouched.

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