Go Ask Mom

Amanda Lamb: The Couch Diaries

The first picture to our family text thread showed my daughter's new pullout couch wrapped in heavy plastic and leaning against a wall in the hallway of my her apartment building.

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Amanda Lamb's daughter's new couch
By
Amanda Lamb
, WRAL reporter
RALEIGH, N.C. — The first picture to our family text thread showed my daughter’s new pullout couch wrapped in heavy plastic and leaning against a wall in the hallway of my her apartment building. She was understandably concerned that it was not going to fit through the door of her apartment in New York City in a building that was constructed in 1924. Whether or not the couch would fit through the door and into her living room had been a constant topic of conversation since she moved into the apartment last month. We ordered it way before we knew the dimensions of the door and the hallway. It was non-refundable.
The first picture to Amanda Lamb's family text thread showed her daughter's new pullout couch wrapped in heavy plastic and leaning against a wall in the hallway of her apartment building.

Daughter: “Very big couch, small doorway”

Dad: “Can you get it through?”

Daughter: “Idk” (I don’t know.)

Dad: “Maybe take the door off?”

Daughter: “I think they can do it”

Dad: “Fingers crossed”

We were so excited when we saw that the movers had actually gotten the couch to the fourth floor of her building. We held our breath waiting for the next picture. Would it go through the door? Success!

Daughter: “It fit”

Dad: “Hallelujah”

Mom: (string of happy emojis)

This was followed by texts about how it looked in the space, photographs of the couch in place and a discussion of getting throw pillows from Target.

These are the small victories you share with your adult children from far away. They are distractions to the real deal, the realization that your baby is all grown up and living on her own now. But more importantly, helping your adult children with any kind of issue even from nearly 500 miles away makes us as parents feel like we are still needed. It also makes us feel like a family unit, that we are all in this together.

I remember when I was first out on my own there were no cell phones, no email, no texting. Instead, I called my parents every Sunday night and gave them a very basic and generic rundown of my week. But it wasn’t the same as being in daily contact. The evolution of digital communication, especially visual digital communication, allows us to be part of our children’s daily lives even when they are grown. This is a gift even when we sometimes hate our cell phones for how much they suck us into a mindless vortex devoid of real human interaction.

I will give my daughter space, but I will always be here, a text, a call, a FaceTime away for all moments great and small.

Mom: “Don’t forget to order a set of sheets.”

Dad: “Please protect the mattress.”

Daughter: (Silence)

Amanda is a mom of two and an author of several books including some on motherhood. She is also a WRAL reporter and successful podcaster. She began writing Go Ask Mom columns in January 2010 and took a short break in late 2021. Now, you can find her posts monthly on Go Ask Mom.

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