Home. I think about it frequently. I write about being a stay at home mother. I write about making a home for my family.
I grew up in only two houses. Home was a physical and unchanging place for more than twenty years. In the last ten years I have moved more than I had previously in my entire life. In the last five years alone I have moved three times. This house, this home where I am now, we moved while I was pregnant. When we brought Lucy home and our family was complete, I knew we were home for good.
This week I am packing up the car again. I am taking the girls to the beach. Mention to a grocery clerk or an acquaintance “heading to the beach” and they might not even notice the melancholy tone. The beach. The beach is vacation and sunscreen and smiles all around, right? But long ago, the beach was home.
I became a mother at the beach. I brought Emily home at the beach. Home. I miss the sand and the salty air in the morning. I miss the long, flat roads for running. I miss my friends and the seafood and my family.
This week much of my ex-husband’s family will gather at the beach. My family. Waiting on the birth of a new baby we will grill hot dogs and laugh and soak up the sun. Some time this week I will put Lucy in the jogging stroller and I will take a nice long run down Bay Drive. I will turn down Third Street and as I get closer to my turn, my old street, my feet will slow. I will ready myself. And I will run by my old home.
My family is still my family. The beach will still welcome me with the promise of sandy feet and the tight feeling of salt water dried on my skin. The long, flat roads with a cool breeze in the morning will be there. But my home? It isn’t my home anymore.
I hope it is home to someone. I hope there are flowers on the porch and bicycles in the driveway.