Redefining home: embracing change
This post is about change and trying to navigate what home means when circumstances force you out of the one you wanted. Basically it's about having your parents move out of your childhood home when you're in college. It's not that dramatic but it is to me so let me say my shit.
I don't know if I'm writing this for just myself or not. Maybe I'm the only 22 year old who gives a shit if her parents are around, but then again I don't think anyone reads this anyway so I can do WHATEVER I WANT HERE! And I can start sentences with 'and' and they can run-on to express my rambling thoughts. Oh my god there's so much space. This is my safe space. Wow it feels liberating, everyone who's not reading this should start a blog to write to their non-readers about whatever the hell they want.
Back to me. To preface this post I will give a little background.
[Some odd years ago, Mom felt a calling to open a wedding venue at our country house in Upstate NY. Then, Mom and Dad opened said wedding venue at our country house in Upstate NY. Eventually, Mom and dad got sick of commuting between Queens and Upstate NY.
Mom felt ANOTHER calling to move to said country house. Mom and dad didn't discuss said move, that is up until daughter left to Sydney, when mom and dad thought it would be a great time to discuss said move. Daughter has panic attacks 10,000 miles away due to lack of control or preparation for what was waiting for her in NYC. Daughter returns, family moves, daughter uprooted to Brooklyn. Doesn't love it.]
This will be the premise of my first novel. ^^^
Today I went to my parent's house in Queens to cook for tonight's friendsgiving dinner. As I was cooking I felt myself get right back into the groove of being at "home". I watched Jane The Virgin on the TV while I chopped onions. My mom called me, my friend Elena called me, and it quickly brought me right back to where I wanted to be. As I sat on the couch when I was done, I noticed how the light outside hit the gold embellished chest in the room and illuminated a yellow light all over the house. I remembered how much I loved that light.
I walked outside my house and noticed my uncle dropped off one of his cars while I was home and parked right behind me: a reminder that we are all close to each other here– passing through all the time. I miss that the most. I miss coming home to my family and knowing that more family can walk in at any moment.
I think a lot about how I was raised. About how Fridays were for family sleepovers, movies, and Chinese food. I remember not having to make plans because I knew were were all spending the weekend together no matter what. I think about how important that was to my childhood. Every 'best memory' including the family together and what kind of adult that made me.
I think about those things and how my parent's move made that difficult. I wake up all the time missing them. I miss coming home and going to their room to talk about our day. I miss waking up to find my mom making breakfast in the kitchen. Wanting to see them is a paradox: When I'm in the city, I'm wishing I could head up to visit them already, and every time I get there I immediately consider going back down.
My mom noticed it last weekend when I was unsettled. I felt weird: I wasn't in the physical home I wanted but I had my home in it–my family. The morning after my arrival, my mom told me about her doubts. She told me that she wondered if she should just make all of our lives easier and move back. She worried that she was doing me and my siblings a disservice. I did a really shitty job of holding back tears.
I didn't know the answer. My laziness wanted to yell "YES! PLEASE! LET'S JUST FEEL NORMAL AGAIN!" while my gut settled my shaking leg and pushed the knot in my throat back down. It whispered "no." Because even at that moment when I couldn't give a good reason to why we were there, I knew there was one. I just need time to reveal it.
Today while I sat noticing the light that I had missed so much, I watched the door, hoping my mom would walk through. But if I'm being honest with myself, I don't think it would have made a difference. We've outgrown our big city home. I wouldn't know how to live in it again if I had to. It's the shell of our past. It's an old love I want so desperately to fit back together.
Resisting the change would only destroy the promise of what's to come.
That's what I tell myself at least, that there's a method to the madness and that I have to just have faith. And if you think I'm saying that's easy, I'm not. It's scary and it's uncomfortable, but comfortable is boring, and frankly, comfortable was never promised to any of us when we came into this world.
So I don't reallllly know what home is right now. I wish a lot for it to be 2015 again, the last year of normalcy we had. But I think about the things I still do have, like my family and the more quality-time we have together now.
On Friday I woke up and got a message from my mom that we received our photos from our last family photoshoot. As I looked at them I got overwhelmed with gratitude. Because I am one of six people going through a change that hasn't yet been navigated. I have a family: a strong, loving, healthy, supportive family and that's about as good as it gets. Maybe it was Kate's photography magic (Korver Photography) or it was the fact that you could face swap the photo any which way you want and it wouldn't make a difference, but something made me smile and made me feel grateful for the journey.
I may not have a pinpoint on home right now, but I do have my family, so does it really matter?