porch with flowers

Why Bother Being Comfortable at Home?

Before I’d turned thirteen years of age, I’d moved five times and I’d had no choice in the matter. The decision to relocate always rested on the shoulders of my parents. 

Moving, Moving, Moving

The first time we moved was exciting because I’d never left the confines of my home state of Nebraska before. The second time we moved though, was not as thrilling. 

I’d become accustomed to living in our large house, a nice home, in an older part of the small South Dakota town where big trees lined the wide quiet streets. Besides that, I’d been accepted into the same gang of neighborhood kids as my brother. I rode bikes and played flag football just like them. But I had no choice. When it came time to move and my parents told me to pack, I went packing.

My Dad tried to make the next move, this time from South Dakota to Colorado, an adventure. We stayed in a state park, something we’d never done before and when the Rocky Mountains loomed in front of us, he pointed them out to me. I was astounded. I’d never seen mountains before, let alone the infamous Rocky Mountains.  

Colorado was by far the most beautiful place we lived. There was no longer a gang of kids to play football with or a neighborhood to ride our bikes around because now we lived out in the country instead of in town.  On the property where we rented an old farm house there was a barn with a swing in the loft as well as a feral cat. Sometimes my brother and I would cross the ribbon of highway behind our house and meander along the shores of a river that ran seemingly forever. But, just as soon as I’d settled down into the comforts of this home, we moved once again. This time being the worst of them all.

At this juncture, our family split apart. Some of my siblings remained in Colorado while others of us, my youngest brother and I, moved back to Nebraska to live with Grandma. That split, that tear in the fabric of our family was never repaired. During this particular period of fragmentation, Dad ended his life. After that, Mom bought a house back in the town where our family had first begun. Any house though, new or old, large or small would never feel like home to me without Dad.

It was a few years later that I moved again, this time to be on my own. First, I lived in a shack shared by four or five others. Then I lived alone in an apartment. After I married, we lived in the house my husband built and now, we live quite comfortably in a small house with a big yard in town. For the last thirty-two years we’ve lived at the same address which has given me ample time to feel at home. 

Consequently, our home, our space, our place no matter its size or location, is where our heart resides. When we feel we are at home, our hearts are connected intimately with those we abide near, or with. Home is also the place to where we are glad to arrive back again because there is a sense a familiarity that runs deep inside of us. We know we’ve crossed the threshold of home when we feel something refreshing wash over us, a relief from our cares and safe. Home is indeed where the heart is and where the heart is our home. 

Why bother being comfortable at home? Being comfortable at home is not necessarily being snug as a bug in a rug, rather being tranquil with who we are, with whom we reside and with Who resides in us.

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