This day has been a long time coming. We finally sold our former home and signed it over to the new owners last night. I went to the house earlier in the day to retrieve our lamps and timers. I was more than ready for the house to sell, but wasn't prepared for the emotions of saying goodbye to the home that sheltered my family for 32 years. I went from room to room, revisiting memories of my daughter growing up in that house.
When I walked up the stairs I thought about sitting on those very steps feeling my heart ache a little when I watched her board the school bus for the very first time. I stood in the livingroom remembering Christmases, birthday parties, Trick or Treat nights, proms, boyfriends, graduation, late night talks, laughter, and tears. I went to my daughter's old room and could still see her playing with Barbies and being excited about snow days. I stood at the kitchen sink looking out the window and remembered watching my daughter climb onto the top of her swing set and walk from end to end. She was a gymnast for a time and had no fear of heights, but she nearly caused my heart to stop when she practiced gymnastics in the backyard. I often had warm cookies waiting for her after school on Fridays and I wondered how many dozens of cookies I'd baked in that kitchen.
Even the bathroom held memories of mama cats and kittens. When some uncaring person dropped a pregnant cat at my doorstep, I'd take her in and lay bedding and blankets in the bathtub as a refuge for the little cat family. I helped mama cats learn to care for their kittens when they themselves were too young to know what to do. I always knew they were safe from harm and would be nurtured and loved as long as they were with me.
I went to the lower level of the house and there was the little room I'd used as a sewing area so many years ago. I thought of long nights spent sewing projects for the many craft shows in which I'd particpated. When I no longer used the room for sewing, I re-purposed it as a kitten nursery. After kittens "graduated" from their refuge in the bathroom, they would be taken downstairs and given more freedom. I spent many hours in that room loving and nurturing kittens and their mamas.
After I finished touring the house, I went to the cabin. The tears were already flowing when I went inside my little sanctuary for the last time. My heart was breaking as I thought of how much my grandkids loved being Granddad's helpers as he built the cabin. They couldn't wait for it to be finished so they could come and play inside it. I arranged a book and game nook for them in the loft and they had great fun hiding up there and "scaring" me as I entered the door. We had game nights, art sessions, dance parties, and watched movies in the cabin. We even spent a few nights out there. While I still can't imagine anyone else owning my little hideaway, I truly do hope the children who will soon live in the house will use the cabin as a playhouse. I also hope they will love it as much as I did.
THE RED FRONT DOOR TO THE CABIN
I LOVED THAT CEILING FAN AND STAINED GLASS GLOBE
PARTING PHOTO OF MY CABIN
ON OUR WAY TO THE CLOSING - A RAINBOW OF PROMISE
KITTEN NURSERY - EMPTY EXCEPT FOR MEMORIES
I took one last look, snapped a few parting photos, then packed up my memories and took them with me as I left my former home and cabin for the last time. The visit was emotionally draining but it was also cathartic. I think I'm now ready to move on to the next adventure.