After a few years of not really having a proper home of my own, the one I have been building with my own two hands is just about ready to receive me. I guess I didn't realize just how important it is for me to feel like I belong. But it matters, and the fact that I have provided it for myself, with little help from anyone, is a gift I didn't see coming.
I have been going through my belongings, the ones that I have been keeping in a distant basement, and holding them again has helped me to remember my fire. All of the stuff, which is not much in the grand scheme of things, that has filled the edges and corners of my life with comfort are finally coming out of their boxes and into the light.
I have set up my house with a few bird feeders so that the birds will greet me every morning, and I have a window from which to view their antics. This will be a house of my healing, the realization that all I had to give up for a little while was well worth the sacrifice.
It is tiny, my new home, the size of a small bedroom, but what will reverberate within its walls, a life of love and generosity and reflection, will exponentially increase its physical boundaries.
I have lived in many large rooms, many lovely rooms. But with all their beauty and richness, there was hollowness without the fullness of me within them. For no matter how large the room, if you cannot expand within it, then what good is it?
My Aunt had a house of stunning, cold rooms. I remember the smaller me amidst the beautiful art on the walls and the tables, all surrounded by cream and beige furniture. In all that beauty, I was afraid to breathe or even move too much, less I puncture the air surrounding the beautiful things. I would not dare touch them, or even sit without an invite. My Wranglers were always muddy from play, my Zips always caked with the grass and the gravel of my childhood. I could not help but dirty those rooms no matter how small I made myself.
My childhood house was different. Everything touchable, nothing too precious to sacrifice to the fire of youth. My parents loved things, but did not love them more than their small children. For a few years, it was a safe place to play. I can feel myself recreating something like that, something like a place where I am allowed to be.
My house welcomes all evidence of a life well-lived, of my life, no matter how messy, or how inconvenient, I will always be welcome within the walls of my new home. This thought brings me to the edge of tears, where the fullness of my breath rushes into my body and cleans away the sorrow of holding back.
I don't have to hold back any longer, not in my new home.