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Just a Thought - There's no place like home PDF Print E-mail
Monday, April 09, 2012 8:17 AM

I bawled the night we signed the papers. After our realtor left, of course. I didn’t want her to think I was crazy. I know our house has been on the market a while, so I shouldn’t be shocked by this. But it’s suddenly — real. I’m suddenly freaking out, having cold feet, having a hard time letting go. I love this house.

I remember how I felt walking into this house for the first time, precariously taking everything in and then oohing and aahing at the vintage chandeliers and high ceilings, the hardwood floors and gorgeous, intricately-carved wooden staircase and stained-glass window until I could feel excitement surging inside me, threatening to spill out. I knew it. This was “The One.”

I remember the first night we stayed here. Adele was still little enough that, as Andy and I attempted to sleep on the air mattress upstairs in what would become our bedroom, I tossed and turned all night, eventually just lying there wide awake, afraid that Adele would wake up in the night and accidentally tumble down the hardwood stairs.

We didn’t have air conditioning at first, so I remember staring out the window into the night sky, listening to the hum of insects and rustling of tree branches against the sound of the fan whirring in our room, making an effort to reduce some of the uncomfortable humidity.

This is the house we painted, every room, spending hours pouring over paint samples, deciding on just the right colors. This is the house where I smiled when I felt Eleanor’s first kicks from inside me, placing Andy’s hand over my protruding belly so he could feel it and smile, too. This is the house that we brought newborn Eleanor home from the hospital. The house where she learned to roll over, to crawl, to walk, to speak. Will she even remember this house?

My kids seem to love this house as much as I do. They’ve spent endless hours running from room to room, the hard sound of their feet against the hardwood echoing throughout the downstairs. I’ve spent so much time just simply looking around while sitting in my house, taking in its beauty and history, the more than 100-year-old original woodwork causing me to audibly gasp with admiration every time. Have I mentioned I love this house?

So, no, goodbye has not been easy. I didn’t know I would already cry the very night we signed the papers, signifying the sale. From there, I’ve already gone through so many emotions. At times I feel like a jilted lover. Watching a new family take possession of my house is like seeing an ex-boyfriend I haven’t gotten over, parading around holding hands with someone new. I also feel as if I’m giving a baby up for adoption and I want to know these people will take good care of her the way I did. I’m sure this all sounds silly.

But still, am I ready to pack everything up in boxes, to transport what will fit into the tiny apartment we’ll be renting until, in the words of Greenday, “time grabs you by the wrist, directs you where to go”? Like when ending a relationship with someone I’ve clearly loved yet have realized that it’s just not going to work long-term, I’m now having second thoughts. What if there isn’t one better than this out there for us?

What I have to remember is that a happy family is ready to move into this house and they’re as excited as I was when we first found out this house was ours. I also know the only way we’ll ever end up where we’re meant to stay cannot happen unless we sell this house. As I pack up our belongings in boxes, I have to focus — not on what we’re leaving behind — but what we’re moving toward. I really just have to focus on the reality that it is a house. A thing. The people I love will always be with me, no matter where we end up. I want to focus on the road ahead, as uncertain as it may be. What the house represents to me is comfort, stability, memories. It’s not so much the house itself — as much as I do love it — it’s what the house signifies and that’s why I’ve become emotionally attached.

From here, we can find a new place to make more memories. And once in a while maybe even recall the wonderful days this house has brought us.


Last Updated on Tuesday, November 06, 2012 4:06 PM

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