I was reading a book recently, where the character reminded me of my dad.
After my parents got divorced my dad moved from a bad house to an even worse house. At one time he was even living in a barn. I saw his space. He slept on a cot, and had his clothes in milk crates. There was another place that he would never take me too. I never understood why. Now looking back I see it was his pride. In many ways I am glad he never showed me. I am a visual person and it would be imprinted in my thoughts. I still remember how strange it was to see my dad inside the barn stall. His friend let him stay there when he had no where else to go.
dad’s home away from home
At the time he lived in Indiana, and it was the early 90’s. I cannot imagine rent was that expensive, and yet he did not have the money. I remember one house he lived in, had mice. Yes, many homes have mice, but these you would hear crawling through the walls, and they loved the kitchen. You would find their droppings in cupboards, on the counter, and on the floor. I am sure my dad hated it, but many times he did not have a choice. I know what he would tell me today. He would say: “I have a roof over my head, and food on the table and that is all that matters.”
As I type this I am crying. I wish he had a better life. If he were still alive today, maybe he would have figured some things out and found that house that he could call a home, with no mice, windows that let in the light, a dresser for his clothes, and a place to park his beloved truck. I wish I had understood back then how hard it must have been for him. To have to leave the home you have, walk away from seeing your family each night, and start out new. I wish his life had been different. I will never know what his life might have turned out like, but I can keep living and working to make mine better.
What does home mean to you? I was recently inspired by a blog post on Home by DesignSponge. It made me start to think about the different homes, dorm rooms, apartments, and condos I have lived in throughout my life. What made them home to me? My response: lots of things.
Growing up I do not remember specific things that made me feel at home. I guess I never had futuristic thinking or knowledge to know that after the age of twelve, I would never have a room to come home to that was my own. Once I learned that, I began to make each current “home” as comfortable to me as possible. In college that meant that my bed was the best place in my dorm room. I saved up from babysitting so I could purchase a feather bed, a feather comforter, amazing sheets, and, you might have guessed it, feather pillows. It was my home.
Gradually over the years, my bed was still very important, and I maintained the high quality sheets and of course, feathers, but as the size of my home evolved from a dorm room to an apartment, to a condo, to a house, so did my expanded of sense of home. Now, my sense of home is still very rooted in my actual house. My bed, the art, how it is organized, how clean it is, etc. all ground me and make me feel comfortable and at home.
Just like the saying goes: “Home is where the heart is.” That is true, and so in true form, Chris is my home. When we are together in someone else’s home, in a hotel, whenever or wherever we are together, I feel at home. One of my favorite things to do is to continue to make our house our home…together.
One last thing. I want to create a print and frame it that says: “You are responsible for the energy you bring into this home.” This is something that I have thought about over and over again in the past year. What energy am I bringing into other people’s homes and vice versa. What if we always thought of that before we enter any home, workplace, or commercial establishment?