“you are searching everywhere
you want the sun
find your home
between your eyes”
― Žiga Stanovnik
I’ve been desperately wanting a house to call our own. My houzz ideabooks are stuffed with greys and blues, plush rugs, stone steps and beautifully tiled laundry rooms. I’ve been trolling trulia for all of the houses up for sale in our neighborhood (and culling all those that don’t fit my exacting criteria) even though it’ll be at least another 8 months before we can leave this apartment. We’re not filthy rich, so most of what I dream will stay in my mind. But that’s okay. We’ve got time to make the house our home where dreams are realized.
Some people say that home isn’t a building but the people in it. I’d love for that to be 100% true since it would make waiting with my hubby at a dirty bus stop be like putting our feet up on a cushy ottoman, tea in hand. In reality, while the people and animals you share your home with are the most crucial part of what makes up a “home”, there’s no escaping the long sigh that escapes when you finally sink into your own bed and bury your head into your own pillow after weeks of being away.
Nothing beats familiarity.
I’ve “left the nest” for some 12 years now. We’ve had our fair share of apartments and a good bit of luck with our current setup. Having only one neighbor above us beats the surround sound situation of college life – pounding feet, arguments and drunken music. I can’t believe we put up with so much for so long, but I suppose that’s one of the long held rites of early married life – the “what we had to do back when we first got married” story is firmly written.
Going back to my childhood home, however, was never the same the minute I stepped off the porch. The fact that my bedroom was replaced with tatami mats and kotatsu and all of my favorite foods were suddenly absent from long stashed cupboards meant that while my heart might never leave family, my actual presence in the house was now that of a stranger. Or a friend. But certainly someone that now felt like she had to ask to use the milk or to borrow the fan. It’s jarring when you fully realize how easily distance can occur. One day you’re the child who doesn’t even blink to switch tv stations and demands pizza for dinner, and the next you’re politely agreeing to whatever everyone else wants to eat and sitting neatly on the couch.
And it’s not like my parents are all about rules, either. It’s just a sense of otherness that seeps into the carpet. Suddenly you see the house as an outsider might and all of its flaws and beauty are laid bare. Funny how when you’re in your own home we become blind to everyday living. Currently, I have laundry hanging on chairs after being ironed and a pile of paper sitting on my kitchen table. By Saturday, when my parents come to visit, all of that will be cleared away and the floors swept. “This is my home and my life,” the neatly placed coasters shout.
I’m hoping to find a house that we can truly customize to match our personalities and dreams. I want our home to be somewhere people gather, laugh, eat and relax. I want it to welcome us with open arms, bright with the warmth of the sun and the solidness of earth. I want our home to reflect the life held gently between its walls.
And these lovely pictures? Not our home. :) They’re ideas taken from houzz of what I’d love to see in our future home. Dreams, all of them.