May 26, 2021 · Write a comment · Categories: Musings · Tags:

As mentioned on this blog in October 2018, I had gotten frustrated with an old coffee table that needed replacing. It was still functional, but the veneer was flaking off, and and its unusual dimensions (long and narrow) meant that I hadn’t been able to find a comparable table after many online searches.

Old wooden coffee table with chipped veneer.

I reminded myself that it was only a piece of furniture and there was no reason to let it bother me, but I still felt stuck whenever I looked at the table. Although it was obviously no big deal in the grand scheme of things, it triggered a “life shouldn’t be this hard” feeling anyway. When my husband and I first set up our household more than 30 years earlier, some friends gave us the table, which was old even then. We liked the dimensions and thought we’d get a new coffee table after a while, but it didn’t happen.

So, with hopes of turning my stuck thoughts in a more constructive direction, I wrote a blog post describing what I wanted in a new table. I saw it as an exercise in attracting good things by being more precise about what I wanted, and I titled the post “Placing an Order with the Universe.”

Despite my efforts, it didn’t seem like the Universe was much inclined to take such an order. One of my specifications for the new table was that it should be an affordable mass-market item easy to buy online. I spent many hours searching for oversized coffee tables on furniture store websites, with no success. Every time I washed the old table after we ate pizza or hamburgers on it, I had to be careful not to rip off more splinters of veneer. I tried to tell myself that I should be grateful for a comfortable life anyway; but in truth, I felt annoyed whenever I looked at the old table.

One night last winter, my husband still had work to do because a big project was behind schedule. I was waiting to cook dinner and was half asleep on the couch, feeling cranky about being deprived of sleep because he hadn’t been ready to eat at a reasonable hour. I looked at the worn-out old coffee table and got even more irritated. Then I finally thought, we have happy family dinners, and that’s what matters.

I could feel something shift in my subconscious mind just then. Somehow, it seemed almost like I had moved a physical object into a more comfortable position. Then another thought occurred to me—why had I been assuming that a custom-built table would be too expensive?

When I next looked online for coffee tables, I went to a marketplace site for custom items. Almost at once I found a reasonably priced solid oak table in a style I liked, which could be made in custom sizes and colors. Although the vendor had a bit of a backlog, that didn’t bother me after all the time I’d spent searching. I have been enjoying the table since it arrived last weekend.

Wood coffee table in front of couch.

Now, every time I sit on the couch and look at the coffee table, it lifts my mood and reminds me that I go through life surrounded by abundance. If a new table had been easier to find, I probably would have taken it for granted. So, I’m giving the Universe a five-star review for sending me both a lovely coffee table and a valuable life lesson.

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