Monday, June 13, 2011

House. And Home.

Sunday night found us pulling up to the Yellow House after the third party in as many days.  Kids were tired, hot, and weepy.

I squinted critically at the Great Prepare The House for Painting Project - whole swathes of cedar shingles in various stages of scraped or painted, giving passers-by the distinct impression of a bad case of mange.

On the way inside I kicked the kids' buckets, scooters and bike helmets out of the way disgustedly.  A pigsty, I muttered darkly to myself.  This place is a total pigsty. [A brief reality check here: who says pigs are so filthy?  I mean, did you ever see a pig with a million dusty tchochkes on the shelves, or hear a pig complain about paying too much at the Container Store for organizing products?]

I heard the tap dripping upstairs, all the way from the front hallway, and set my purse down amongst the pool totes, reusable shopping bags, and backpacks cluttering the rug. Sure would be nice to have a hall closet for the kids to ignore, I groused.

Stupid house.  Stupid old time-sucking money-hemorrhaging house.

And then.

Monday morning found me with a listless and crying six year old on my lap, pressing the sides of his throbbing head to somehow lessen the pain.  Monday afternoon found me in the pediatrician's office, the lab to offer blood samples, and, by evening, a radiology center for further tests.

Honestly I didn't think much about my house, or the junk inside or the case of mange outside, this Monday morning.  Didn't think at all about it, in fact, until I heard a wavery plea from the face buried in my neck: please take me home, Mommy.  I just want to go home.

This was the refrain I heard all day, as we waited the long minutes for our name to be called.  Please take me home, Mommy.  I just want to go home.

To him it was not the stupid old time-sucking money-hemorrhaging house.  To him it was rest, it was reassurance, it was cool darkness and sheets that smell like 'our' laundry detergent.  Home had not the first thing to do with peeling paint or dripping taps.

That's how this house works.  Because this house is, to us, home.


This post is submitted as part of Peter Pollock's One Word at a Time Blog Carnival.  The theme is 'Home', and although I've been pretty clear with all of you that my true home will always be England, there is a pretty charming little spot right here near Baltimore that's got a tight hold on my heart. 


Varda said...

Oh, Kirsten this is so lovely. Yes, Home is home. And that sign? That sign is perfect (Do you have one? you should.)

Hugs. And hope the little guy is feeling better.

Lori-Anne said...

And once again you manage to leave me with tears in my eyes!

So glad your little man has a nurturing place in this world to return to, and hope he's feeling 100 per cent soon!

diane said...

hope your son is ok and it was nothing serious.

Helen said...

I hope all is well with your son.

Lisa notes... said...

Oh, this is good and certainly puts things into perspective. Praying for your son...

Matt said...

I hope your son gets to feeling better. Love the change in perspective.

A Joyful Noise said...

I can hear those pleas, "Take me home Mommy." Such a sweet boy. Sickness does make every thing different in perspective. A home is a place of comfort and rest beneath the clean sheets that smell of detergent.

lynnmosher said...

Oh, dear! I think I'm going to cry. What a touching post. Praying your son is okay. Blessings to you!

Anne Lang Bundy said...

Kirsten ~

I'm so sorry about your little one. My six-year-old can make my heart bleed like no one else. May he and you be filled with health and home and hugs.

floyd said...

What a great reminder. Amazing how God uses our children to remind and sometimes teach us. Great post.

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