This is my parents house. The house that they and their four children have lived in since the early 70s.
**Hard to believe right – I know. I was actually born in the 70s.**
This house hosted countless dinner parties, graduation parties, engagement and wedding parties, luncheons for non-profits, Halloween parties, birthday parties….HOLIDAYS and more HOLIDAYS. (My family is blended religiously and spiritually, so we celebrate a LOT of holidays!)
When I was born, my parents brought me home to this house..
Just look at my dad rocking the cool. And me, rocking the red, old man face.
Here is my mother standing in front of the house with me as a wee babe. (Is she wearing a robe?)
Anyway, it’s easy for me to become super nostalgic about this house. Kinda funny, it seems it is easy for my friends to become nostalgic about this place because they kinda feel like they “grew up” in too. When I posted this picture on my personal Facebook page of the moving truck out in front of the house a few weeks back – I got about 25 sweet responses. And several texts and emails with sad faces and “oh, how I will miss that house” notes. I was so touched.
My parents moved into the house in their 30s and joined a bustling neighborhood of other 30-somethings with young children and more children on the way. There were built-in neighborhood babysitters. Well worn bike routes, neighborhood rules (always “be home by the time the street lights come on!”), passageways scoped out in the alleys and everyone knew the older couples that would give you candy and look the other way when you ran through their backyard.
With this change in our family, it is interesting to look back at the changes in the neighborhood. All of those 30-something parents with their young children have moved. First, the children when they grew up and found their legs. Then the parents when their houses were too big, too much for their needs. My parents and the other families replaced older folks that’s families changed and grew up and out. Now, my parents and their friends are being replaced by new families, with young children and more children on the way.
It’s easy for me to get super nostalgic and sappy about these kinds of things. I miss the house already. So weird that when I go home to visit my parents next time, I won’t in fact be going “home”. And, I probably won’t ever go in that house again. Odd. My heart says all of that, my head says – your parents need a more manageable circumstance. One that makes sense for them. Sadly, this big ol’ house just doesn’t anymore.
I went home to help clean up and clean out. And as I laid in bed the last night in that house, I thought about what the house wants for it’s new life. I think it wants to be filled with young people again. Kids that will run in it’s alleys, climb it’s trees and play in it’s yard. It wants swing sets, baby pools, bikes and dogs. It wants to be lively and happy and filled with families from the neighborhood – having drinks and laughs on the porch in the summer. And trick or treating in the fall. And, after a long day playing out in the neighborhood, it wants them safe at home….when the street lights come on.