The word home is strange for me, especially if it’s quiet and I really stop and think about it.
Just a sec, I’m going to run home and change… home is where my clothes are. The kids will be home from school at 3:25…home is where our mail comes. We’re going to stay home all day and be cozy and watch movies…home is where our furniture is. My home is where my heart is. Where my husband is. Where my kids are. Where I feel safe and comfortable and crawl into bed every night. Where I have wonderful friends and a whole half of our family. With a home I love and a life I love even more. Bloom where you are planted. Home is wherever I’m with you. Right?
I went home to Spokane this weekend for early Thanksgiving and there’s a whole piece of my heart that says, home is where my mom is. Have you ever gone home to your parent’s house and no matter what bombs are dropping in your life, you feel at ease? You just want to lay down and rest because you’re not scared, or anxious, or wondering if you’re raising your kids right or what your house looks like? I just like to sit on a barstool and lay my body across the countertop and smell my mom cook. If I close my eyes I can be sixteen again. I can just be simple. And in those moments my kids are perfect, life isn’t hard, my husband isn’t a police officer who works shiftwork, and there are no bathrooms to clean. There’s a whole piece of my heart that says home is where my very oldest friend lives. Where I had my first kiss. Where all my Grandparents live. Where I went to 18 years of school. Where my mom remarried and we had a perfect, normal life, a golden retriever, and a lake cabin.
Sometimes I forget about this place where I knew all the streets and could drive anywhere in my sleep. Memories all over town. And sometimes I wonder if I really forget or if I don’t let my mind miss home as much as I know it does. I’m really good at putting on a sad song and drowning in my own angst, so I don’t. There’s a part of me that could get suffocated by memories of watching Saturday cartoons in my Baumpa’s racecar T-shirts that smelled like bleach and Nana making us waffles for breakfast or having my MamaC’s tea with milk and sugar after dinner just before Jeopardy starts. Sometimes this familiar place seems as far away as a tropical destination rather than three hours and a bathroom stop to the East.
It’s weird when you grow up and your life gets divided into two parts. Childhood, parenthood. It’s even weirder to think that when you get older life will further divide into new seasons, but I’m not there yet. I know I will mourn this place and time that I’m in because it’s so dear to me now that I’m sure to be homesick for it when it’s gone.
I put this print up on the wall when we first bought our house. I faked it ‘til I made it. I tried so hard to bloom where I was planted. I was patient and fed myself what I needed to grow. Time. It’s taken me many years to finally realize that “home” is a relative term. I can go home to my Mom and her seven Christmas trees, where I went on my first date, drove my first car, and would stay up all night drinking tea with my brother. And then I can come home. Where I brought my babies from the hospital, where I planted the Iris from my Mom’s yard, where Matt and I make coffee together in the morning, where Santa comes.
I can have both, cherish both, and someday I will miss both.