It would be nice to find mine.
I gave up the one I had created for what I thought was a better opportunity…love, a bright and shining future. Sure, there were going to be some difficulties. I never expected the path to just be perfect. But things…started going wrong. There were debts I didn’t know about, financial issues that I again didn’t know about, I had trouble finding a job, the landlord responded to the debt by leaving his wife at the house when he was supposed to help her move in with him to another state. And there was the fact that I had about a cubic foot of space for all my stuff in the time I was there. Most of my things stayed packed in my car until my husband took them out in a panic one night, as I was on my way to meet friends. So they got brought down to a basement to stay packed there. Then I found out about the cheating. And everything in me broke. I guess it was lucky that it took less than 30 minutes to pack what wasn’t already packed, no more than an hour to load my car up and leave.
And I came back to the closest thing to a home I’d had in, well, years. Because even in what was supposed to be my apartment that I shared with my now exhusband and exwife, the last few years especially…it became less and less mine. Gothic horror art was going up. I wanted to downsize and they kept collecting books and DVDs. For these and other reasons, I felt like I was being edged out.
So I came down South to start over. My sister made me a wonderful offer of a finished basement. I was starting to decorate. I had my stuff unpacked. And then I made the decision to move. After trying to convince my soon-to-be husband to move down here, where it would be relatively free to live and go to school, he said he wanted to stay. So I went. So hopeful. So much in love.
Coming back, I found that my niece had moved into the basement, her sister and husband had moved into her room, their son had moved into their room and…that was all the rooms. All taken. The first few weeks I was here, before my niece left for a part-year job in Alaska, I slept on the couch or in a twin bed in my two and four year old great-nieces’ room. My bed I had left down in the basement until I could come get it. Which was where my niece was living. She left about two weeks after I got back, so I could then move down to the basement. The first few nights were like heaven. I had my bed back. Sleep came almost naturally. I’ve been down here for nearly five months and now she’s coming home. And we’re trying to figure out where to put me.
No matter where I go, I’m displacing someone. Or inconveniencing someone. No matter where I go, it’s not mine. I won’t be able to unpack my boxes. All of my stuff’s scattered…some is in the garage, some is in this closet, some in the attic. I know they’re just things, but…damnit, they’re my things. The only place I feel completely at home, and have for the past few years, is my car. It’s the only space where I can go that’s mine. I thought of going back to my dad’s, but a) I don’t know if he’d have me and b) it’s not like it’s a perfect solution. I’d be leaving my sister and her family, the gorgeous lake, the church and choir, the Y (which, besides my sister is the biggest thing for me, since they are paying me to exercise and I need that activity.) and some good friends I’ve made here. But I’d be going back to a place where I have many friends and some family, my childhood home, which there are two rooms that are just mine. I’d be able to take care of clearing out the clutter of my old life, my childhood, and physically moving on from it which I’ve been needing to do for a while. I’d be back in a place where I felt comfortable in my bones.
But is comfort the key? What makes a home? What brings that feeling? For me, it’s somewhere, a bit of space where I can be me. Completely me. Decorate the way I want to, put things where I want them to go, inhabit the space how I see fit. I haven’t been that free, that expressive, that confident in years. I don’t even remember the last time it was. Probably the last time I lived at my dad’s. I was starting to get it here, before I had to go and screw everything up. But even then, I was still staying in a space that predominantly my sister’s. Now I’m staying in a space that’s my sister’s but my niece moved in on top of that, and then I moved in on top of that.
Goal: I’d really like to find myself a place to call home.