Tomorrow I go home.
But not really. Kind of.
You see, a year ago my mom sold the house I “grew up in” – we moved a ton when I was little so this house had held the most, fifth grade on, and was all that I held dear. Her moving felt fine from a distance, and though I wondered how it would feel when I got back to SoCal it never really affected me much.
Till now. Every time I start to picture what this trip will mean, I picture our breezy backyard with the plastic adirondacks and the years-unused jacuzzi where I had my 12th birthday party. I picture the big master bathroom with two sinks where we’d do face masks as a family. I picture the kitchen table where our cat would do her “Bible dance” before retiring to the chair in the sunny windowed corner by the yellow plaid painted walls. I picture the glider overlooking the gully beyond the house and the rampant cottage garden in front of the window. I picture the teeny bedroom that held so many slumber parties and cryfests, that was pink and yellow and coral in turn and whose closet still hides my treasures. I simply can’t imagine what a trip “home” means without these landmarks – physical landmarks, but landmarks of the soul, too. That house has so many imprints of our family, of me, that it simply cannot be empty of us now. Regardless who lives there now, we do still, too.
So, I’m travelling with not a little trepidation, trying to create space for myself to grieve and feel sad – over something as silly as a roof and some walls, and something as deep as the history of who I am. And I’m trying to remember that no matter the address, I am indeed going home. To my roots, to my sandy beaches, to my Mexican food and my Oscar’s breadsticks. To my family. And to a big part of me that will always be in southern California.