14 years ago this month, we bought our first house. It was little, but on a decent sized corner lot. It was not in the “best” neighborhood, but in a really good, quiet neighborhood. It was a good house, and we planned to be in it for about 5 years. Today we signed the mountain of paperwork to refinance that house. We’re still here.
We’ve talked about moving dozens of times over the years – including as recently as this year – but for a variety of different reasons we’re still here. We’re still here, and I have actually been resentful of that fact. My top two reasons for wanting to leave are the apartment building we see from the backyard and a desire for all of us to have a little more personal space. I’ve even gone so far as to say that I hate this house.
So after signing my name roughly a million times – while also trying to verbally encourage my son to use a skill to self regulate as a panic attack was brewing – we refinanced the house I have said I hate. Driving home from the appointment, the song “Home” by Blue October came on the radio. I’ve heard the song before, but I never really listened to it until today. Today I heard loud and clear…
Something we can build for years
I’ll be there to wipe your tears
We all get to see
Who we grow up to be
And anchor when in doubt
An ocean when in drought
We aim for it all
We lift of these walls
To make this house our home
Dancing in the kitchen in the pale moonlight
Only care in the world is that our kids are all right
Daddy loves momma and momma loves him
Tomorrow we get to do it over again
As I continued to drive toward home, I pondered those words and found my perspective shifting. The first time we walked into this house, we knew we had found a home. Back then it was just me, my husband and two cats. It wasn’t part of our plan to raise a family here, but we could envision the possibility of raising kids in this house. Years passed. Life happened. And over the course of those years, we made the house a home. We filled the rooms with love and laughter, and became a family here. We have dreamed, argued, cried, and grown together in this home. This home has been a sanctuary for each of us at different times when the world has been too rough. In recent years, I became so bogged down in the limitations of the physical space, that I lost sight of what is actually important.
The house is walls, windows, doors, floor and roof. Our home is love, laughter, dreams, security and family. I may not like certain things about the house, but I can’t hate our home. I love the home we have have made. Home is where we are family – real, raw, broken and beautiful. And tomorrow we get to do it all over again…