Monday, September 12, 2011

Looking Back: The Wallpaper (NaBloPoMo Day 12)

I had outgrown the babyish print that had been on my bedroom walls since before we moved into the house; I was in second grade, and my mother had told me I could pick out whatever I wanted to replace it. Off to the wallpaper store we went, each with our own visions of what the future room might look like.  

When I spotted the paper, I knew immediately that it was the one for me. I wish I could show you a photo, but you'll have to use your imagination. Picture an explosion of large, bright flowers. Now, double the brightness. Hot pink, shocking purple, parrot green. It was the most beautiful thing I had ever seen.

My mother gently tried to steer me toward other choices. She reminded me that I would have to live with my choice for years to come. She coached me to envision the paper, not as it was in small sample in my hand, but on every wall. She allowed that it was lovely, but perhaps a little bright.  

But I was firm, and, to her credit, she stuck to her word. She had said I could choose, and I did. "Are you absolutely certain?" she asked, one last time, before paying at the register. Yes, I was sure.

My father hung the paper without comment, and only the slightest twinkle of amusement in his eyes. We finished the room off with a green shag rug. The result -- to my second-grade self -- was glorious; I had the most beautiful room in all the world.

The NaBloPoMo writing prompt for Monday, September 12, 2011 was "Write about your childhood bedroom." Learn more about NaBloPoMo at


  1. Ohhh, I can just picture it, Rebecca! How long did you keep it?? I bet all your friends thought you were "cool".

  2. I love this post!!! I can evision the paper too!! I picked out my own paper when I was thirteen and had so much fun planning my room, but I remember when I was about 7 my parents re-painted the room I was then sharing with my two sisters (before we moved and we each got our own room) They painted it all different shades of lavender and my Great Aunt had given us a check for 30 to pick out a lamp for our new room. My mother tried to steer us to the pink lamp but my sisters and I insisited we buy the red one. That lamp hung proudly and then moved with us!! I think it's great when parents let kids express themsleves!!! Thanks again for a great post!! I really have come to look foward to your posts!!

  3. Thanks Kathy and Erin!

    My friends were jealous. Oh, and I also remember making book covers for my school books using the same paper.

    When I got to about 7th or 8th grade I was less thrilled with my choice, but I didn't want to admit that to my mother. Fortunately for me, my younger brother had outgrown the small room he had been using, and it was decided that they would repaper my room for him and I would move into another.