Without getting too personal with the details of family and life, most people will know that my parents are days away from moving across the country. This isn’t an activity we participate in often. My mom moved to within 20 miles of her current home in 1975, and just kind of stuck around. Do the math, and realize that this means I’ve literally never left the “DMV.” Yes, we moved out of my childhood home almost 10 years ago (!!!), but I still have this home-base known as “Mom’s House” that is close to family, friends and everything familiar. No matter how wide I cast my own net, how many places I travel and how often I pretend I am a grown adult with the power to move away, I find myself tethered to this concept of Home. If I’m a ship out to see the world, my mama’s custom mooring is always open and never strays far as the tides of life move it first this way and then that. (Plus, it always goes for the concept of Breakfast For Dinner, which probably should get it’s own dedicated post.)
Side note: I’m going to let the boat analogy go now, if mainly because my knowledge of boating begins with “fishermen’s nets” and ends with the existance of a “moor.” …both of which I’ve now covered.
My point, though, is that for some inexplicable and profoundly coincidental reason, my mom and I are both picking up and moving on. Within 30 days of each other. Dice was at Mama.L’s today, helping her pack (with the help of her baby Happy, who has yet to make his Great Blog Entry). She kept sending me photos of the house at various stages of chaos and clean. (You know that specific chaos? The one that only exists when your life is officially 50% in open, untaped and half-full boxes?) It occurred to me that as the dust settles on my own transition, it’s just kicking up over in Virginia.
(I know you’ve been wondering about that title. Follow along.) She is about to follow my lead in first questioning whether this unfamiliar house is really a home. (Home?) This phase may be the shortest period of adjustment. You wander around for exactly 1 day before you realize that if it’s going to be a home, you’d better make it one, gosh-darn-it!! and fast!! What are you lolligagging around for when you could be out buying the perfect little things to make everything feel just like home! Yes, you guessed it – this leads us right into phase two. (Home!) Characterized mostly by nesting, excessive attention to ridiculous details and an unusual amount of time spent rearranging furniture/clothing/closets/storage/kitchens/pantries/etc/the kitchen sink, this phase walks a very thin line between convincing yourself you’re enjoying your new Home! and actually enjoying it.
And then, one day, you wake up. All your food fits in the fridge in the right way, and when you stumble into the kitchen to make your morning cup of tea, you fill kettle/grab tea/prepare cup and spoon/put away last night’s clean and dry dishes–and then realize that you didn’t think about any of it. You knew where those things live because this is, after all, your home. (Home.) The squeaky clean may have rubbed off, leaving in it’s place a clean that you thought you could only find at Grandma’s. The kind of clean that implies a used home. a loved home. a home.
Me? I just received (what I pray will be) my last order of weird home goods for my new place here in LondonTown. It arrived from the local discount “box” store in 7 different oddly shaped packages and included: 6 plastic bins without lids; more Tupperware than one person has any business owning; a yoga mat that still smells funny and fake; a baking starter kit that I think was marketed at new bakers, not new nesters; a toaster; an immersion blender; a hand mixer. Clearly, this list is logical. I’ve already hung hooks for things and found the perfect little accents to hold makeup/jewelry on my (still annoying) cupcake tray. I’m pretty sure I’m weaning myself out of the Home! stage of this move. Here’s three cheers and a few prayers that tomorrow I wake up at Home.