The Lyrical Life


lyr-ical\’lirikel\adj 1: suitable for singing; melodic; 2: expressing direct and usually intense personal emotion. (Hello!)

Once upon a time this chair (one of four) appeared to me  — part providence, part convenient parking space — singing a seductive siren song outside of a local thrift shop. I couldn’t resist its/their curbside appeal… charm… sultry lure. Plus, God blessed me unexpectedly with a bit o’haggling money, thank You very much! I enjoyed them immensely as long as I was allowed to have them, like so many other things in life — children… siblings… people… and recent home.

Whether you believe in Providence or not, spontaneous delights that show up on your doorstep (or end up in your trunk) are proof of “something more.”

These chairs are now a transient memory (life happens), but as past photos recall, their elegance and significance to me (not to mention how much they haunt me in their absence) linger on. It’s okay… I’m okay… recognizing that some things are harder to get over than others, even when they’re just “things.” (I’m soooo not a “thing” person, but, for one brief decade this chair — and it’s identical companions — graced my life and represented my soul, and I loved them for it.) However, I’m not defined by them… rather, I’m clarified (and enhanced) by sharing them with you. xo

A quick “aside”… most of my life there was a song in my heart that wasn’t heard. It was disconcerting (not to mention discouraging) when the folks I expected to be listening weren’t. Perhaps they weren’t able to for whatever reason. (Compassion reigns rampant these days and I’ve become less conscious about why re: reasons — I have so many of my own! — plus, I’m more forgiving with age. thanks to Divine Wisdom and hindsight.)

Thankfully, there were a few exceptions along the way. My piano teacher listened to (and understood) my ‘song’… my sister and brother (rest in peace) knew it… my two children still connect with it. Forty-odd years later, The Man Of Few Words tunes into my ‘frequency’ and hears it — and believes in it! Yay for life’s ‘listeners’ and ‘believers’ — especially when we’re incapable of hearing or believing in it ourselves.

There were other hints of my song, too — my personal ‘melody’ — that showed up in a restless spirit, indicating something more was in store — although I couldn’t put my finger on it at the time. (I probably didn’t appreciate it, and definitely didn’t follow it.)

Please don’t do that. (Time is too precious to waste.)

Presently, I’m the result of every decision I’ve ever made. (We all are.) Can’t change that — or the past — or it would have changed life’s course — moi — and later stumbling fortuitously upon these chairs. (There’s no such thing as coincidence!) Yes, something integral — innate — invisible — was forged. It lingered and I learned.

Thankfully, each time “blissful ignorance” threatened to overtake my countenance (and/or alter my already hazy sense of direction), another piece of my life’s puzzle showed up to point me in the right direction… including random chairs.

Lyrical Chairs

At first glance, they looked like suspects in a criminal investigation — raw, exposed, and sporting false identities, with years’ worth of reupholstering rendering their true identity into a gaudy “I dare  to sit on me” brocade facade. But, I just knew they had a story to tell (theirs and mine) and I felt compelled to rescue them — if not from further exposure, than perhaps to subject them to a gentler form of humiliation. (We should all be so kind to ourselves.)

“$50,” said the shop owner.

“Apiece?” I asked, expecting the price to be much higher for such fine craftsmanship.

“For all four,” she answered.

Who am I to question? Done deal! (I should be so lucky again at future thrift shops!) My budget hasn’t always been able to accommodate my whims — (it still isn’t) — but, on that particular day the funds happened to be available. (Thank you again, God!)

Post-transaction, I toted the chairs home intent on finding out what lay beneath their surface — not in a ‘paparazzi’ way (exposés aren’t my style, unless they pertain to myself in moments of honest scrutiny), and proceeded to remove layer upon layer and decade upon decade of fabric to reveal their original brown seat covers.

Serviceable. Sedate. Safe.

Bear in mind, there’s nothin’ wrong with a “plain brown life” — or whatever color your song (or upholstery) reveals! Uncover it with unabashed enthusiasm and self-abandon, no matter how many layers it may be buried under. (And never mind what anybody else’s expectation of the results may be.) Find YOURS and don’t look back.

Delight is in the discovery!

These days “simplicity” is de rigueur for me, but other times… hoohah! Dress it up a lil’ and celebrate! (Life and chairs.)


Isn’t that what living “for real” is all about…?

Uncovering layers of yourself until the Truth is revealed, curiously and kindly? It doesn’t have to be scintillating to be satisfying. In fact, sometimes an ordinary life lived extraordinarily is just the ticket… and the long sought-after answer. (But, you can always make it more fun!) Reupholstering may be part of the process… just be sure it’s your choice of fabric! And… if life is a matter of survival for you (like it is for me now), remember that curbside opportunities are oft found later… much later… and they delight long afterwards. Keep your eyes open for possibilities, lest you miss them!

Which brings me back to The Lyrical Life

Express yourself, and don’t hold back. Tell somebody how life is affecting you at the moment! (Find a human being  — or a chair, if need be — to listen.) They often become a part of you — witnessing YOU — but they’re not YOU.

Be yourself, whatever you uncover!

Enjoying chairs and life to a greater degree,

~ Kim

© 2015 Kim Bultman and a little lunch

14 thoughts on “The Lyrical Life

  1. Pingback: Musical Chairs | a little lunch

  2. Dear Kim,

    Thank you for a beautiful blog post. The one other thing you have in expressing yourself is through your music on the piano. Don’t ever lose that precious gift from God. Blessings to you and your family.

  3. Beautiful…and lyrical in the way you wrote it. The chairs: I love that what you lost returned just like that (and what a great price!). The chairs: They seemed to have come alive in this post. No, we’re not our things but our things can have a deeper meaning. I lost a box of endearing books to mold and giving my power away. It still stings…yet I can still see the inscription from a friend to my 12-year old self in the Thesaurus I treasured. The book won’t ever return but words, they always come to me and I can thank my days of obsessively “reading” that particular Thesaurus.

  4. Pingback: Sunday Morning Coffee »

  5. Beautiful post, Kim, thank you. I loved the layers and metaphors scattered throughout this piece. This is the sentiment I find most resonant this morning: “Sometimes an ordinary life lived extraordinarily is just the ticket.” I feel so blessed to have one of those extraordinarily ordinary lives. xxoo

  6. You have such a beautiful way of expressing your ideas, often related to music which I feel is your passion so I’m not surprised that you would be drawn to those chairs. We’re all layers of our experiences and I often wonder how things would have been different if not for some things life threw at me. I guess I’m who I am because of that and because everything has a ripple effect, those around me are who they are somewhat because of my life experiences’ affect on them. As I get older I try to be more conscious of my affect on other people and tend to think more of others than myself.

  7. Another inspiring post, Kimby! Honestly, I never shopped in a thrift shop before. Somehow, I’m not a fan of 2nd-hand goods. Nothing to do with being snobbish, just that I don’t know who has used the stuff before. Maybe I’ve been watching too many horror movies; I don’t think I’ll like the idea if the piece of goods turned out to be from a dead person. Hahaha!

  8. What a beautiful post, Kim. I do love your chairs and you certainly got a great deal. I can’t believe for all the craftsmanship you were able to buy them for just $50.00. Those chairs certainly tell a good story xx

  9. I loved this post. I felt like I was inside your head giving you a hug. The chairs are beautiful and for $50 – amazing. You have so much more in store coming up soon. I just know it.

    • Maureen, you ARE inside my head giving me a hug… thank you, xo. Glad to hear you had a wunnerful time with Celia and Charlie and all, despite pre-breakfast follies. :) Your grace (and good food) inspire me!

  10. Another wonderful post, Kim. I hope whatever shows up to replace the chairs will bring you joy. You express yourself so beautifully. Thank you so much for sharing. Sending love, Jeanne

    • Jeanne, I loved your idea: “whatever shows up to replace the chairs will bring you joy.” You’re right, it may not be another chair… and I love not knowing! Maintaining a sense of wonder is half the battle when ‘real life’ throws itself in your face. Thank YOU for your continued thoughts… and possibilities! xo!

  11. My Kim…I read and read again this thought-provoking and moving essay…no, it’s not a simple ‘blog’ (blah blah about something), it’s a piercing look into each of us…those chairs, those beautifully lyrical chairs, evoked such passion and your words are the music…thank you for giving me some real things to think about…it’s what life’s about…stimulating and special in the simplest of ways. Love it, my luv…don’t need to say more xoxo ~ally

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