Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Thankful Me: Day 2

Tin Man: What have you learned, Dorothy?
Dorothy: Well, I - I think that it - it wasn't enough to just want to see Uncle Henry and Auntie Em - and it's that - if I ever go looking for my heart's desire again, I won't look any further than my own back yard. Because if it isn't there, I never really lost it to begin with! Is that right?

Today's letter is H, the second letter of Thankful Me, in case you didn't realize how I was deciding what letters to do...

When deciding what my "H" would stand for, I immediately thought of home.

Home has taken many forms for me over the years. It was a little yellow house with burgundy/red shutters on Pueblo Lane for the first 14 years of my life. It had a sandbox that quite possibly could reach to China, and bike rides were the highlights of our evenings.

Home then became a brick, ranch-style house on Woodbridge Road, with a beautiful sunroom, a formal dining room and living room for my mom, an extra bedroom/office for my dad, and plenty of space for two teenage girls. This home hosted countless bridal and baby showers, two graduation celebrations, and a nervous bride with her bridesmaids the eve of her wedding day.

The dorm rooms in college became home purely out of survival. When leaving the only refuge you have ever known, you have to embrace your new surroundings and build your family where you are. My roomates became sisters, the twin beds served as sofas and tables, and the piano in the lobby was claimed as our own.

My husband and I spent the first year of married life in a townhome complex. White siding with green shutters was reminiscent of Anne's house at Green Gables. We discovered it is possible to stay married even after painting a cramped bathroom one exhausting weekend;we saw the worst and best of each other between those walls.

Our family of three now makes memories in a house on Winterfield Drive. I spent late nights studying for my Master's degree in our bedroom and bonus room. Friends and neighbors filled the rooms with laughter and some tears. I found out I was pregnant in our bathroom. We've christened nearly all the toilets with the GI bug. We've burned half our yard with a fire pit and had every neighbor in the cul-de-sac join in a bucket brigade. We brought our firstborn home through this front door.

I'm thankful for home.

Wherever that may be.

In a yellow house with burgundy shutters...

Or Room 701 in Greene Hall...

Oh, but anyway, Toto, we're home. Home! And this is my room, and you're all here. And I'm not gonna leave here ever, ever again, because I love you all, and - oh, Auntie Em - there's no place like home! ~ Dorothy

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