|"Be it ever so humble, there is no place like home..."|
Today I cleaned out the last of my things from my ex-house. In no way did I ever want it to be my ex-house…but that is out of my hands now.
I really enjoyed living there for the better part of 14 years. I enjoyed the tranquil neighborhood. I enjoyed the affable people. And most of all, I enjoyed raising a family there.
With little to no help, especially over the last few years there, I did everything I could to make that house a home; I made sure the kids were fed, the various animals were taken care of, the laundry was clean, the bills were paid and the homework was done. All of that is forgotten now…swept under the rug like so many dust mites.
“So it goes,” the late, great Kurt Vonnegut would have written.
So it goes indeed…
Let me tell you, it was quite the unsettling experience doing this today. It took me much longer than I anticipated because I was “chasing ghosts” around every corner. The kitchen retains the laughter of a lifetime. The dining room still smells of holiday meals and Christmas trees. The basement sustains memories of raucous parties, scary movies and video games galore. Even the goddamn stairwell floods me with recollections of the last words I ever said to a sweet, sweet girl.
Every nook and cranny of this place punches me in the gut and brings me to tears. Every nick in the paint or crack on the wall has a story to tell: The story of the family that no longer lives there. Their pictures still may be scattered about the place but, trust me, they’re all gone now…
…and not because I wanted them to be, or they really and truly needed to be.
As hard as it is, it’s best to let all of this go now. For my own sanity’s sake I can chase these ghosts no longer.