Why are rocking chairs synonymous with old age and inertia? Older people are reminded frequently that they must keep busy and save their “rocking chair years” for later. When did rocking chairs get such a bad rap?
I love my rocking chair! The first thing I do when I walk into a room, whether it is a vacation rental or the home of friend, is look for a rocking chair. If I see one I make a beeline in that direction and stake it out as my own. Selfish of me I know, but I have never liked to just sit quietly (if nothing else I end up crossing my leg at the knee so that it can swing it back and forth).
I read an article in Prevention magazine (October 1999) www.prevention.com that mentioned that rocking chairs have the power to heal, soothe and stop a baby from crying. What could be better than that? The gentle soothing motion is thought to be therapeutic because it calms anxiety and creates a sense of well being. I’ve also heard that it works for back pain and I have a theory that it prevents motion sickness. Prevent might be the wrong word but I like that that I can read in a moving vehicle and rarely get sea sick.
Rocking cradles date back over a thousand years but did you know that the rocking chair is an American invention? Rocking chairs did not make their appearance until the eighteenth century and have been a prominent feature in many homes since then.
There was a time when rocking chairs were found in every home. There were rockers on the porch, rockers in the bedroom or nursery, and rockers in the parlor. Do you have fond memories of porch swings, park swings, rocking horses and other rocking chairs in your life? Rocking chairs were found in the homes of many famous people. I like to think that John Adams, Abraham Lincoln, William McKinley and both Roosevelt’s did their greatest thinking in their rocking chairs.
Is it because people are too busy to indulge in quiet reflection that the rocking chair has fallen out of favor? Owning a rocking chair should signify that you believe in “quality time” and it should have nothing to do with your age. If you don’t have a rocking chair you could be missing out on something really special.
I’ve always believed that a rocking chair turns any room into a home. What is your favorite rocking chair story?