As I sit in my bed writing this post tonight, I am completely wiped. Mainly because I’ve been running around all weekend, but also because I’ve been to IKEA 3x in the past 24 hours.
It all started with a broken dresser. A very nice, antique dresser that has seen it’s better days. After deciding that it was time for a new dresser, I ventured to IKEA with my friend/landlady/seudomother, A, in search for the “perfect” dresser. After all the “mirror, mirror on the wall” shtus, I found a lovely, white-stained dresser that perfectly fit my needs for the time. 2 boxes and 1 strong woman later (A, not me), we were home and gearing up to drill this baby together (again, A, not me). As we opened the box, something seemed wrong. Unfortunately, we had taken one box that was not part of the matching set, and I would need to return it the following day, Sunday.
Okay, so fool me once, shame on you. Like, sure this was annoying, and I wondered the whole night why H-shem would make me go through the annoyance of bringing home the wrong dresser. Having not come to any concrete conclusion, I woke up this morning and went with my newfound bestie, B, back to IKEA. A little background is needed for the rest of the story: basically, everything in Bergen County is annoyingly shut down on Sunday, so the IKEA where I originally made the mistaken purchase was closed; therefore, I shlepped to the IKEA in Elizabeth, which is in the middle of an area that looks similar to District 13 for all you “Hunger Games” fanatics out there. So here B and I are, walking into IKEA for my 2nd time. We get in there, and a nice man looks at us and goes, “You might want to grab a seat, it’s gonna be a while.” Now that is never a good thing to hear someone say, especially when it’s next to the Customer (non)Service department. So after a minute of kvetching, I decided that I would come back later.
After a lovely rest of my day eating kosher popcorn at the mall, (shoutout to Doc Popcorn which is certified by the OU (holla atchu work!) at Jersey Gardens. I was THRILLED! It tasted as delicious as it smelled.), A climbed back in the car with me, and we made attempt number 3 to exchange the infamous dresser. At this point in the evening, the store was basically closed, but I still had to wait in a line at customer service. It was finally my turn. I made my initial pitch to the woman behind the counter, and she went to see what she could do. She came back out and began to explain something about “inventory” and the numbers not matching. I have to admit that by this point I was barely listening because I just couldn’t believe I was hearing not what I wanted to hear. Basically the manager came and said that since I bought the dresser at Paramus, I would need to return it to Paramus. Chas v’shalom, two IKEA stores should share inventory and have good customer service. Anyway, there I was, literally speechless because anything that I would’ve say would not have come out nicely. 3 strikes. And I was out of luck for the night.
Driving home I kept trying to figure out why H-shem would have put me in this position 3 (count it!) 3 times in 24 hours. I’m still not 100% sure of the answer, but I’ve come up with an explanation that will help me sleep tonight: a dresser is simply something that I want in the physical world. I don’t need this dresser. It would just be nice to have something new to make my room look a bit brighter, and the drawers would work. But ever since I started thinking about getting a new dresser, it’s all I’ve been able to think about. And at a time in the year that is so precious, it is clear that I should be concentrating a little bit harder on other things, like my chessed (kindness), mitzvos, and tefilah (prayer). While I have been making quite an effort to work on myself lately, the past couple of days have left my mind a bit preoccupied with this dresser ordeal. Now that I am at home, still dresser-less, it’s occurring to me that maybe H-shem wants me to be focused on my relationship with Him, rather than a dresser in this material world. Somewhat comparable to this new iPhone 6 that is out and distracting the minds of Jews and non-Jews alike, I cannot be distracted from what is important. And what’s important is preparing for Rosh Hashanah, and working to better myself and my relationship with the King.
So while I do plan to try again tomorrow, I’m going to go to sleep with a different mindset tonight. Whether IKEA means “junk”, “huge inconvenience”, or “really annoying” in Swedish, I will continue to roll with the hugs that H-shem is giving me. BH, He is reminding me to adjust my priorities, and with that mindset, iy”H, everything will be alright.