These Four Walls

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Recently, my roommate and I moved to a new residence. There’s nothing quite like a new nest and also nothing quite like moving in Central Texas heat at the end of June. It was a scorcher, but the day had an end and the new apartment was ours, so we did what we could to keep lifting the boxes. At the end of the day we sat on a hardwood floor, slurped some Popsicles and drank white wine like water. We drank and dreamed and talked about important things, but I’d like to think that the fluidity of that hour or two- the swish-swash of cooling off and settling in as best we could was the most important thing of all.

It seems that most people, including myself, make big deals of homecomings and housewarmings.  In part, I believe homemaking is a kind of christening. A new belonging. Gladly, I break such sacredness into the humdrum because it’s graceful to name the ways in which we belong. After all, good belonging, sounds and feels a lot like beloved- and really, what else is there? If I can say I’ve belonged to one or two or three beloveds and they’ve belonged to me, I think I would feel quite complete.

So this has got me to thinking: when we talk about homecoming, I want to already be home. If the process really is sacred like I’m saying it is, I just shouldn’t rush it, by I do. I find myself scheming how it is I might nest all at once. It makes me feel manic, and is definitely hard to live with. Indeed, such compulsion isn’t very cozy, but it happens. Especially to me. Especially when I have to wait. And sometimes, I think all good paintings, novels, songs…soul-food really is about the angst-old question of human-hood: “Could this be home?” The redemptive part that keeps us reading and listening and looking translates to: “Well, let’s make it home for now.”

I don’t know if this angst is good or bad or healthy or unhealthy. Maybe it’s just plain dramatic. Drama queen or not, I feel almost home-ness a lot, and the feeling is pretty real. I know that’ s sort of a paper-thin response. Elusiveness helps me to hold things more lightly. So, at the end of the day, I can throw up my hands, and say things, like “it is what it is.” And at the end of the day, this is what it is: my friend, settling in just as best as we can and me: cross-legged, delirious and thankful for sweet Popsicles and sweeter wine.

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