Relocating~ The past few days were spent packing up our home; the house we’ve lived in since Bella was 5 months old. She is 7 years old and 4 months old. This is the house where I truly came into my mommy skin. It is where Bella crawled underneath the Christmas tree and stared up at the lights in complete awe. This is where we all had a lot of our firsts. It is the home where the Big Guy and I finally felt ‘home’. The home that Gabi was conceived in and brought home to and greeted by kisses and squeals of joy by her big sister. It will no longer be ours. It was the first home we lived in as a family. Soon, it will be where memories are made for another family.
I’ve been so caught up in moving forward & surviving the past 3 years of upheaval that I never let myself grieve for the loss of our home. Our. Home! The home where the Big Guy and I first heard the words muttered “ Mama & Dada” uttered from tiny mouths. The home where both of our daughters celebrated their first 4 birthdays will no longer feel the electric energy of both sides of the family gathering in celebration and love of our girls or my husband pouring every ounce of Daddy love into making the girls the birthday cake of their heart’s desire. My dad will never play his guitar and sing to my girls in that house. There will be no more annual Thanksgiving Rock Band marathons after turkey in our media room in that house. There will never be another Fourth of July spent in our back yard with all of our friends and family playing corn hole and having spontaneous water fights. I will miss all of that.
As I packed the sum of our life until now, I’d come across a binky, stuffy or some other newborn toy that I know we’ll never need again & my heart sunk a little thinking of the children I raised in this house and the one that I lost, who I will never see smiling up at me from the jumper in the bedroom door jam. The baby who I will never walk around our neighborhood at dusk, as the streets were flooded with our neighbors walking off the day. Sitting on the back deck sipping coffee with the man of my dreams, listening to the morning birds in the early sun as the girls sleepily found their way into our laps. Seeing the yard where the sign stood welcoming Gabi home reminded me of how I felt that day. The happiness and joy that I felt through my exhaustion at my two beautiful, perfect daughters. The neighborhood where both girls celebrated their first Halloweens dressed as the cutest pumpkins I have ever seen. The house where my girls made their first friends had first play dates and learned the value of a good friend. The back deck where the Big Guy placed a corsage on Bella’s wrist at the tender age of three for her first Daddy and Daughter dance just so he could set the standard of respect and love that our girls would demand from all men henceforth.
This home was filled with the laughter of the people we love so much, tears of joy and pain as we endured hurts and embraced firsts. The home where I had a 1 year old Bella toddle over to her Daddy and hand the Big Guy a card and a small box which held inside of it one of the greatest gifts I could give him, the announcement of our second pregnancy. Our home where the Big Guy got down on one knee and proposed to me, 11 years after our wedding just because I never got the down on one knee proposal of my dreams the first time. This is why he IS the man of my dreams. In our home, this is where the Big Guy encouraged me to pursue my dreams of becoming a writer and start this blog. He gave me the support to give it my all and the love to continue on even when I felt no one else was listening. He was my first ‘fan’, he is still my biggest fan and that means something to me.
This home is where the four of us became a family and learned the meaning of the bond two people share once they have children together. It is the house where I learned that my heart could walk around freely outside of my body and I could survive. It’s where I realized that marrying your soul mate means someone to share everything with and to bring you unfathomable joy but it also means that you have more to lose than anyone else. It’s where we learned that when you have a second child, your love and attention does not split; your heart and love double, at the very least. It’s the house where I learned that unconditional love is not only possible, it is by far my greatest privilege to be able to give it to these other three people and my honor to receive it from them. I am blessed beyond measure and thankful to have them to love, every single day of my life. A place cannot contain heart bursting unconditional love, heartbreaking memories and the feeling of really belonging, these all reside in your heart and that goes with you wherever you go.
When I pull away from our home that final last time later this week, I know I will cry for all the growing we did there; all the experiences we had together; gummy smiles and realizing our family was growing, Sunday’s when daddy had to leave, teaching the girls to ride their bikes and watching as they were born, then watching them grow from newborn, to toddler, preschooler and the first day of school. The beginnings of the growing up and letting go of the most important things in my life all started here. I’d like to take it all and put it in my mind on an endless loop, like a memory hoarder but then there would never be room for new experiences. I look forward to the next chapter of our lives together. I am excited and elated knowing that we will be in a home together, just the four of us again, going to bed and waking up and everyone being in the same house. I will cry when I say goodbye to the only home the four of us have ever known but I will be thankful for living the experience. Home is where your heart is even when your belongs are long gone.