A Place That Feels Like Home

When I moved here a little over two years ago, I was drawn to this yard. Finally, this place for us. I was excited. Oblivious to what lie ahead, but regaining a home base for my family. Nonetheless. Starting again. The adjustment period was nothing I could manipulate into something more manageable than it was. I didn’t even know I was adjusting. After only a year since the changes, I was still adjusting. Go figure.

By nature, from my childhood, I can make a home anywhere. Even back in the lean city years, I embraced our rusty water. The inconveniences. Bad landlords. Bad locations. And parking tickets being the new religion. I have been happy everywhere. Because along with often assigning periods of stress, or trauma to my home, I also, without fail, will assign feelings of great joy and beautiful memories. Until it becomes it’s own entity. Not something easily left behind or forgotten, simply due to what it will always hold for me. I attach memories to things too often. I know this. But that will not change. It’s how I hold on to periods of my life. It’s how I hold on to parts of me.

I have always been a protector. Even when I was nothing else. I was that. Even when I had nothing else, I still had that. Purpose. So often, I had been in the position to protect my mother’s heart. And mend it. To protect my brother’s body. Often mending that as well. To protect my wife from her own pain. And my children from whatever runoff that I missed. It didn’t take long after settling in here, to realize I would guard their new home life with my best. Regardless of how out of place I felt. And how out of place I was in my own life. It was still that purpose returned to me. To build a safe, accepting home structure where, not long before, it had failed.

A lot has happened here. A lot of change. A lot of long nights, and months of struggling in silence for things that will not be resolved in my lifetime. Broken will and desperation. Loss of found hope. Inadvertent isolation and alienation during my inevitable breakdown. Both love and anger. Growth.

A lot has happened here. A lot of change. A lot of long nights working towards fulfilment in work I love. Being stronger, to make sure my kids feel heard at all costs. Healing and rebuilding myself and my own health. Relearning everything I always thought I knew. Applying genuine objectivity and peace for our survival. Both love and anger. And, I found balance…I think.

All of it’s been here. All of it’s been in this time. In a place and period I have both loved and loathed equally. Interchangeable. At times, overlapping. We will find that that is life. These tides can wash in and overpower us unexpectedly. Filling these senses. Then they recede before we are ready to let go. They disappear. Then mix again, and again. Concurrently, we can be left feeling empty, maybe resentful for the loss…and still smile while waiting for that tide to return. Because we still remember exactly what it felt like.

But time moves on. In this yard I loved, the swingset and play structure no longer get use. Our weekend fires no longer have a place on the schedule. I hire out a yard I was once glad to tend myself. My dog’s fence remains half painted from when my excitement for it first waned. But inside, the evolution looks different. It’s solid now. It’s welcoming at the end of our days. It’s lit softly around the clock for comfort, no longer out of fear or sadness. It’s open. And it’s safe. Growth in one place, loss in another. Inside and out.

And this may, indeed, be exactly what balance is. It may be what’s necessary sacrifice. I don’t know. As much as I sometimes feel I’d love to leave this place, and this time behind, to move along. I’m just not ready. My memories are what’s holding me to it. To this balance of the sorrows and joy. The loss and the growth. So I stay. And will. I embrace the balance and smile, while waiting out the tides in my life. No matter how confused I ever am about everything in this time, I wouldn’t give these memories in exchange for any others. Because even while I hurt, I know what feels like home. I’m not ready to move along.

Sam

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14 thoughts on “A Place That Feels Like Home

  1. They say home is where the heart is,but I still regret not having a ‘homeplace ‘ to go home to. My grand parents (both sets) moved,my parents moved and we moved too. Now that I am a believer my home is yet to come and I am very homesick.

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    1. Oh no! It’s so hard when families don’t stay centrally located, or never really were 😢 It is the same here. Its just me and my kids. My dad has been here since May but he’s going home soon. Everyone else is split up between states.

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  2. This made me think about all the significant people in my life, and the number of moves each has made. My parents moved all the way across the world to come live here in Australia. Whilst living here they moved so often following Dad’s work. Mum and I lost count when we tried to tally it. My siblings have both moved many times. As have most of my extended family and friends. Me? Since I married, we have only moved twice in over 40 years. I think I got tired of being uprooted so many times as a child. I know there will be one more move when we are ready to downsize, but not yet…… Having said all that, we have travelled around this great land a lot, always happy to return to home base. But at the end of the day, home is where you make it and where your heart is happiest. You have a lot of wisdom, Sam.

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    1. We were always moving to follow my father’s business as well! A LOT. When I was married we moved from home and lived in Chicago forever and frankly in the city, you never settle in completely if you don’t have to. You follow good rent and easy transportation. I think I just learned to make my home wherever I found myself. I thought this place would be different, that I’d have nothing but a good book of memories to build on. It’s a tough decision though because I’ve grown attached to even the less pleasant memories here. We hold on to what we can…it’s all defining in a way 😏 Thank you, friend!

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      1. It is all of that. Wherever you go, those memories will tag along

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  3. Isn’t it funny how time changes us, and how the things that we used to be so sure were important become less so, while others become more?

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    1. Time, indeed. If only it were unlimited we could evolve into an all-seeing, all-knowing megaspecies. 😞 It’s the greatest benefit and sometimes worst enemy in getting to know who we truly are and what we need most. I’m learning to embrace that time in all it’s many faults. Sigh.

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  4. I love your thought-processes, Sam. Everything you’ve written makes sense to me and I love the beauty that’s within it.

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    1. Thank you so much! I’m always happy whene these come across as I’d like them to. Thank you for understanding 😏😏😏

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  5. We are in a new home for the past 1.5 years. I called it the transition house for a long time until we deemed it home. Home is where our hearts are. Where we lay our tired noggins on pillows and rest without worry because we are safe. Home is where my kids and I reside with our pets, together with love.
    Great post Sam! I totally understood…that’s what I love most about when you write…the universal feelings and truths that you so eloquently write…thanks for that…for being you. ♥

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    1. It’s so hard to know what will truly be a transition and what’s permanent when you first head in. My truth is that I never *expect* things or people to be merely transitional, and I think that’s where I’m tempted to lose faith often. I like permanence in all things…which is why it might appear I drag my feet sometimes. The long haul is a daunting thought when I’m worried about being a transition myself. Baby steps towards self awareness every day inside my head, though! Thank you for understanding this and thank you for sharing with me!

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      1. We’re all so similar Sam…and yes, baby steps is the way to move forward. 🙂

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  6. Eloquently put. And as said above, I couldn’t agree more, home is where the heart is.

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    1. Truly! Family is who you make it, and home is wherever you give of yourself and recieve.

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