The science of nesting in a transitory place and leaving with dignity (knowing hygge is possible everywhere).
I have moved many times, moved many places. But I don’t think I ever had a home of my own. I was actually never there.
Last week I left my nest, the place where Aurelio was born. The place I prepared to be the egg I was. I can trace the millimeters of that apartment in my mind, walk every room with my eyes closed, sense proximity of the furniture, tell the exact height of the light switches on one go, move around quickly. It was the one and only home, the place that had the french doors that were the reference of Aurelio’s growth, where he would hide, his head only slightly showing behind the little glass windows, then showing his complete head, his nose against the window and a big smile. We saw the seagulls and heard them. Counted boats, felt the rain in our hands, watched the colors of the sky change through the seasons, the moon move on the water, the shadows of our plants crawl the walls in winter. I picked perfect pink hues with my imaginary photoshop finger, hugged the stillness of the Baltic coast, and I loved. I learned other practical stuff on the way- saw youtube videos explaining things too embarrassing to share, basic cooking. I discovered Jamie Oliver, learned the names of the vegetables. Learned that some things are not vegetables. Ate the burned result sometimes. I danced with Aurelio to the reflection of us on the window when it was dark outside, imagining a crowd as an audience. I channeled my superstar and danced to the light of the sun that Aurelio is, feeling crazy euphoric. And I experienced lonely days, dark days, Vitamin-D shortage days, while still battling the normality and dogmatic-almost-obvious ways of my host country, still strange to me, under that white roof with geometric details. Wondered how could I be a guest in a country that contained my nest, my first home, my one and only home. How was that possible. I was home as soon as I stepped into that room.
But it came the time when reality checks check: I was a host and I had to leave. A real estate agent came, like a matrix good citizen, then a photographer came, and two weeks later it was all for sale, our sofa and lamp in the photos. I was asked to step out of the wheel for the next owners. And I frivolously heard the word -next- as I walked out.
It took me a while to put things in boxes, confused, my eyes on the blank space, and even more blank spaces to take things out of the boxes in my new home. I was claustrophobic, running in circles, didn’t know where to sit, where to stand. It feels like when you break up with your first love, hangover. Like when you swear you will never have a drink again, never again. I will never fall in love again. Never.
I’m writing now from a new home- not yet my home, but I will get up on my feet again and smile to my new view, the trees, the grass, Aurelio’s new growth references, the bars of the balcony maybe. I will. Life goes on and our family will grow here, have new memories because we are going places! We will share our own special love with the world in the best possible way. Do our best. And for all the souls that are moving from transitory places, places that felt like home and “forever”, and are now putting everything in boxes and sorting out their lives in piles of –keep, throw away, need-to-thing-about-it, here is my advice: Maybe do an extra pile that says- give away with love– and let go of those things with love. Pick the flower petals on the ground, of the flowers that represent all that is gone, and offer them to the wind. Be the wind. Own the concept of home and feel that freedom. Know that your memories are yours, and all that remains is bigger than the loss. The top of the mountain can be reached in other mountains. That feeling of -one and only- shall fade out with time (like your first love did). Feel the freedom of the power that is in you. Of you choosing the mountain, feeling the strength of your legs, your feet on the ground, your heart in your expanded chest. Of You choosing the climb again, of loving, of believing in the home in your hands, of knowing that you can and will be home again, and again, here, there, exactly where you are.