It’s Friday again. Hard to believe. Maybe it’s just me, but I feel like time is odd this year. Extra speedy. The fact that Thanksgiving looms and I am drinking from a Starbucks holiday cup and listening to Christmas music (love it), is both very wonderful and very strange. It feels like it should still be September. But these things are not up to me. Or you. Sorry.
What is up to me, to us, is doors. Doors? you ask. Yes, I answer. The Happy Headache (a.k.a. the untimely-given-this economic-stuff-gut-reno of our new home) is progressing nicely, our new home is taking shape before our very eyes, and it is time for us to select doors. Many doors. So, we had a very important meeting this week to go over the Door Schedule. I’m still not sure what exactly this means, but in general I’m not a huge fan of schedules (unless they pertain to babies and sleep). Husband and I traveled to Architect’s office and we talked about – you guessed it – doors. Truth be told, we didn’t actually talk about doors themselves for those have already been selected (thanks Architect and Contractor and all those who know more). Rather, we talked about door hardware. Hinges. Roses. Knobs. Decorative finials.
Did I lose you with that last one? Decorative finials? Don’t worry. I was lost at that point too. Maybe I slept through the lecture on decorative finials in college, but I had no idea what these things were. Maybe you are smarter, more acquainted with dainty door flourishes than I am and this is kind of blah for you, but stay tuned, I get fun and philosophical below. (Ah, the suspense.) These finial things are little decorative items (balls, cubes, etc.) that you screw into the top and bottom of hinges to make them, well, fancier. Now, I am usually a big fan of fancy, but these things seemed unnecessary. Maybe I am an odd bird, but I do not enter someone’s home, shed my coat, and run to the nearest door to scrutinize the sophistication of hidden hinges. But, guess what? We ordered finials. Yup. (This is not at all symbolic of our inability to say “no.”)
Anyway, let’s move on. We picked budget-friendly and beautiful crystal knobs, chrome roses (the plates behind the knobs). We were very efficient in making our selections. And then. And then there was a whole lot of talk about privacy. Where do we put locks. On bedroom doors? On bathroom doors? For three seconds, we discussed installing locks on the doors of our girls’ rooms and this prospect horrified me. First, I freaked out about the possibility that my babies could accidentally lock themselves in their rooms. And then, my mind shimmied forward about a decade to a day when they might intentionally lock us out. At this point, I said, No locks on kids’ doors. Period.
Fair enough. At this point, I will stop talking shop. Because, really, how much do you want to know about our future doors? Not much more than this, I imagine. Fine. But as I sat there with Husband, and as I sit here now, I realize doors are not just doors. No. Doors are thresholds between rooms and worlds and times. Doors are passages from here to there and back. We do not just open and close them. We lock them and prop them open. And, sometimes, we slam them shut.
Doors play a big, often overlooked, role in our lives.
There are all those literal doors. Screen doors and French doors and fire doors. Pocket doors and flipper doors and sliding doors. Cab doors and bus doors and subway doors. We hold doors open for friends and strangers and strollers. We hang wreaths and lights.
And there are all those symbolic doors, swinging open and shut. Good educations and unique talents and buffed resumes “open doors.” So many people come and go from law firms and investment banks, these places are often referred to as “revolving doors.” Behind fabled “closed doors,” each of us is a slightly different person than we are at work, or at school, or at cocktail parties. Doors are always closing – on youth, on fertility, on hope. Doors are absolutely everywhere. In every nook and cranny of our lives and minds.
And there might be more doors in our world than we think. More than we can see. My friend Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “Every wall is a door.” What exactly did he mean by this? I’m not sure, but maybe he meant that walls are walls, and limits are limits often because we see them as such. Maybe he meant that there is always something on the other side of a wall and if we want it enough, if we need it enough, we can walk through. We can get there. I don’t pretend to understand the complexity of these deceptively simple words, but I love them. Every wall is a door.
Thoughts? On decorative finials or my dialectic about doors? What doors in a home should have locks? Do you agree that physical and metaphysical doors are absolutely everywhere? What doors are most prominent in your life? What doors do you feel opening – and closing? What do you think Emerson meant by “Every wall is a door”? Please leave a comment! Your words are doors to my often deeply buried self-confidence