I ran out of gas once. I blame the gas gauge of my 1983 two toned green LTD; not my inability to fill the tank.

Thankfully, I wasn’t far from home. A simple phone call and seven minutes later, dad was by my side filling up the tank. I was 16. I’m now 32 and Dad still comes after a simple phone call. So does my husband, any of my four older brother-in-laws and my father-in-law. 

It’s always been like that. Maybe it’s a youngest daughter thing or maybe just a Leslie thing. Regardless, I’ve always had someone to look after me. Admittedly, I like living life like that. It’s easier to take risks and step out of comfort zones when I have support and a 24/7 free roadside service at my fingertips. 

The tricky part comes when I want those people to look at me as a strong, independent woman. I like to think of myself as one, but the guys in my life (and those older sisters, too) may see me in a different light. Strong? Maybe. Sassy? Sure. Stubborn? You bet. But independent? The jury’s still out on that one. 

That might be why my husband, Kyle was leery about me putting together our recent furniture delivery. The boxes sat unopened inside our front door for days. Kyle had a busy work week and didn’t get home until late each evening.

I was getting antsy.

“I’ll get them put together on Saturday, Les” he assured me.

But by the time Saturday rolled around, he only had time to put together one piece of furniture before heading back to work. My patience grew thin.

“What if I try to put the couches together?” I asked him.

He begged me to wait; likely worried I would mess something up or that I wouldn’t be able to tighten the screws. In his defense in all my 32 years, I’ve never assembled a piece of furniture, or anything for that matter. Still, his doubt only gave me motivation.

Twenty minutes after he left for work I opened the boxes. When a large bag of nuts and bolts fell to my feet, I started to second guess my decision. I found the instructions and got to work. Five hours, two bruises and one semi crushed thumb later, I had the couches together. I wanted to jump up and down. I wanted to burn my bra like a true independent woman should. I wanted to run down the street, with all our new neighbors watching, telling everyone about my accomplishment. 

I settled on a hug from my girls and a phone call to Mom.

I’m pretty sure the following words came from her mouth after I told her the big news; “I am woman – hear me roar.”

She was likely just as shocked as me that I was able to put them together. So was my sister and so was Kyle. When he got home after midnight and slipped into bed, his first words were, “they look great, Les. I’m impressed. You just wanted to prove me wrong, didn’t you.”

That was part of it. But mostly, I just wanted to sit on my new couch. 

I love living life with support. If you don’t have much, I strongly suggest finding someone to fill that role; but every once in a while, even the most supported woman needs to venture out on her own. Start with furniture, especially if that furniture comes with step by step picture only instructions. I’m pretty sure my 5 year old could have assembled our couches. But, Kyle doesn’t need to know that.

Read more from Leslie in the Kearney Hub.


Here’s a few shots of the new couch! Couple things:  

1. What should I put above my fireplace?

2. Don’t worry – my house is never this clean. I threw dishes in the sink and all the toys/coats/blankets behind the couch for the shot. I’m tricky like that.




Leslie Means

Leslie is the founder and owner of Her View From Home.com. She is also a former news anchor, published children’s book author, weekly columnist, and has several published short stories as well. She is married to a very patient man. Together they have three fantastic kids.  When she’s not sharing too much personal information online and in the newspaper – you’ll find Leslie somewhere in Nebraska hanging out with family and friends. There’s also a 75% chance at any given time, you’ll spot her in the aisles at Target.