So I am almost through packing up my house. The movers arrive at 7 a.m. on Saturday morning and I will have to leave this lovely place behind so the owners can reclaim it. I will not deny that I have occasionally fought back tears this week as I filled boxes.
You know the one man or woman who really changed life for you? The one who made you feel truly loved and appreciated and understood? The one who made you feel alive and comforted and lustful and desired? The one whose skin you couldn’t stop touching, whose face you couldn’t stop gazing at, who seemed the most beautiful person you’d ever seen every time you looked at him/her, even years after you first met? The one you still pined for years after you broke up, remembering how perfect and wonderful life seemed when he or she was in your life, and knowing, secretly, than no one else was ever going to truly measure up?
That’s how I feel about this house. It will forever be remembered as the loveliest house I’ve ever lived in. It is surrounded by trees and yet still bright and airy. It is peaceful and serene and quiet. It is breathtakingly pretty inside and out, and warm and comforting. It has rooms that I still sometimes just stop and gaze into, admiring the sweet old features. I had the prettiest bedroom I’d ever had living in this house, big and bright and beautiful with windows that opened up into the trees. I still stand and stare out at the backyard, and think I’ve spent half my year here in front of the dining room window, pinching myself that such a foresty wonderland was sitting there for me to appreciate. I love pretty much everything about the place, the colors of the walls, the mantles, the old 1940s tile in the bathrooms, the windows, the stone fireplaces, the screened-in porch painted turquoise and white.
I moved into this house sight unseen. I had taken the biggest risk of my life, moving to a foreign country, leaving a city where I’d spent all my life, still suffering post-marital-breakup heartache and with my 14-year-old son in tow. I was scared, still suffering, fearful my son might not like it here and would want to go back to Canada and live with his father. He was nervous too.
And then we walked into this house. And while I know his friends and his school have been a big part of why he likes the U.S. so much, he was as enchanted with the house as me, and as bummed as I was when we found out we had to vacate it on Aug. 1.
This house has been a welcoming, comforting, loving place to begin our adventure here. It brought me so much peace and joy all year that I could barely stand to walk out of it some days. And now I’m forced to, for good, and that kind of sucks goddamned balls. This will sound crazy, but I sense this house loves me too; I have taken great care of it and made it look even more beautiful, and I just have a feeling that it appreciates my taste and tender loving care. (Especially since the plumber told me the last tenants were slobs/packrats and the place looked sad when he used to come by).
I am trying to find flaws with the house to ease my pain. All I could come up with? The washing machine sucks, and the new house has brand-new front-loaders. Big whoop. That’s like saying the love of your life occasionally farted in his sleep.
In short, I want to chase this house down an airport runway while shrieking: “But I love you!!! No one will ever love you the way I do!!!” and then have us reunited in the end as the credits roll and “In Your Eyes” by Peter Gabriel rings out. I will spend the rest of my life dreaming of the day I get this house back. Even though I never will, because our stars are crossed. Sob.