All the eras of our lives

When Audrey and I were younger, even though we each had our own rooms, we preferred to sleep together on the pull-out couch in our parents’ bedroom. We call it the pull-out-couch era.

I don’t remember when or why it started – or even when or why it ended. I was probably around 9 or 10 years old, and Audrey was 11 or 12. We were young enough that we were in bed and fast asleep by the time our parents came upstairs for the night.

We would just fall asleep talking to each other about sister stuff. We would giggle, tease each other, talk through any problems we were having. I remember that time fondly.

I also remember that during our sisterly discussions, we would hear our parents watching televsion downstairs. Their bedroom (the one we were sleeping in) was directly above the family room, so we could hear the muffled sound of the shows they were watching.

And if they were watching a sitcom, we could always hear our dad’s laugh.

That’s one of my favorite memories about the pull-out-couch era. It was always very comforting, listening to my dad’s distinct, loud, genuine laugh. I guess since he’s usually the one who makes everyone around him laugh, hearing him thoroughly enjoy someone else’s comedic genius just gave me a good feeling.

It’s something I hadn’t thought about much until recently.

It’s interesting, during this current living-back-at-home era, the things I recall from living at home all those years ago.

Usually at night, my parents and I will watch television together. They have gotten me hooked on American Idol. I’ve returned the favor by introducing them to the guilty pleasure that is The Real Housewives of NYC. There are a few shows the three of us just can’t miss – even if it means they have to get DVR’d so we can watch them together later: The Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, Two and a Half Men and 30 Rock.

A few weeks ago we were all sitting in the family room watching Two and a Half Men. During one particularly funny scene, I was instantly taken back to those nights during the pull-out-couch era when my dad let out one of his laughs: distinct, loud, genuine.

It took me back to when Audrey and I would lie in bed and laugh at our dad laughing, wondering what was so funny downstairs on the television.

It gave me a good feeling.

While there are times that this living-back-at-home era can have its tougher moments (not because spending time with my parents is tough – that’s the best part, actually – it’s just that divorce isn’t, you know, fun), it’s the lighter moments, the ones that take me back to the wonderful eras of my past, that make it a little easier.

All the eras of our lives was last modified: March 15th, 2010 by Jane Couto Govednik
SHOWHIDE Comments (12)
  1. Janie… I have told you a zillion times that no-one can make me laugh like Dad, and that his easy laugh is what makes me love him more each day. This post has touched my heart because there is nothing more beautiful than your smile and your laughter (oh, you are your Daddy’s girl in the humor department!), and to see your brilliant smile makes my life. Always remember that it’s the laughter that makes a relationship whole… it’s the laugher!
    Love, Mom

  2. What a nice memory! I always remember going to sleep and being comforted by the sounds around me also (even more so if I happened to be sick and falling asleep during the middle of the day while my mom was in the kitchen or doing chores). It was always something I missed when I got older and went to bed after my parents!

    It’s nice that a really difficult situation can bring with it some good – I’m sure your parents are enjoying the extra time together as well. πŸ™‚

  3. What a great post. I have two little sisters and though I am a mom and have been married for close to four years. When my husband goes away on a business trip and I get a chance to sleep over my parents. I jump at the offer. I just bring a 10 month baby and two pups along for the sleepover.

  4. Jet…

    I’m glad that you like the way I laugh….cause I couldn’t change it, even if I wanted to.

    By the way, I love your laugh too.

  5. It is easy to fall back into it, isn’t it? I feel a lot of comfort in those moments particularly when it is just me and no one else with my parents. I can revert back to those good times all over again and feel like the apple of my parent’s eye πŸ™‚

  6. Jane,
    This is such a beautiful memory that you now have the opportunity to enjoy again during this difficult time.

  7. What wonderful memories of fun times with your sister. Even though it’s not easy the reason you at temporarily back at home, it seems that your parents are wonderful people to go through a hard time with.

    I do have the guilty pleasure of the Housewives & How I Met Your Mother.

  8. Oh, Jane! What wonderful memories! You know, the pull-out-couch era makes me wish I had a sister! I have two brothers and always wished for a sister to share all those special moments! You are and Audrey are so very lucky to have each other πŸ™‚

    Like everyone has said, good things can come out of difficult and trying times πŸ™‚ I’ve been through the living-back-at-home-era. It wasn’t easy, but it was temporary…and my family made things easier.


  9. Oh, Jane, I am such an awful, awful, AWFUL blog friend. I am sitting here in tears with the wind knocked out of me. I had NO idea you were going through this.

    Here I am emailing with you about such mundane things and I had NO idea. I cannot apologize enough to you. I hope you can forgive me and I hope you know you can talk to me anytime you need someone….I will always be there for you (even when I haven’t made blog rounds….seriously, just email me and I will drop everything).

    I am so glad you’re surrounded by love and comforting memories right now. I’m sending prayers up for you as I type this….that your dad’s laughter will help heal your heart and that you will find peace in those memories.

    I love you, Jane!! xoxox

  10. I love this post. A change in living situation totally can bring you back to “relive” and rethink the various eras of our lives…. I’ve been there before too. And during this difficult time it’s wonderful you can reflect on it in a positive way to remember all those special times with your family. I’ve lived at home “after” moving out for various reasons – between jobs, houses, etc and it is always a weird kind of thing – but in a very good way. Kind of like getting to be 10 again you know? Brings back a huge rush of memories.

All the eras of our lives was last modified: March 15th, 2010 by Jane Couto Govednik