For as long as I can remember, my home was the place where I felt safe, comfortable, at peace, and joyous. I grew up bobbing for apples on my back deck every fall. I grew up putting cups outside anytime it snowed so that my mom could make us slushies with the fallen snow. I grew up waiting excitedly for the day the pool would open each spring. I grew up picking berries basically every week at Linvilla Orchards, and bringing them home to make pies and smoothies out of. And then the seasonal process would start over again. Each and every year, I had something to look forward to.
As my family prepares to sell the home that built me, I feel none of those positive, happy, go-lucky emotions anymore. In fact, it's getting to the point where I don't want to feel anything at all -- Because that is a hell of a lot better than the feelings of loneliness, sadness, and anxiety I am feeling lately. I no longer have a home to call a home, because it is being torn apart bit by bit. I no longer have a safe haven, and here are some reasons why:
The kitchen: The place that I always felt like I had an escape to, because my fridge was always stocked with fruits and veggies of all colors of the rainbow. The fridge is now virtually empty, because my mom no longer has the time to go shopping. I know what you're thinking -- You're a big girl. You should be more than capable of buying your own food. Well, that really isn't an option when I work constantly just to be able to afford my college tuition, and even at that point, I still can't afford it. The kitchen is pulled apart at each corner, with no place to sit down to eat the spaghetti I made tonight. I had to pull up a chair to the kitchen table, which had no space for my parents to eat. So we eat separately. Most other nights, I choose to eat in my room, on my bed. One hell of a home, huh?
The family room: Once filled with hundreds of happy pictures and memories, it is now filled with pain as I watch my mom pick apart each memory and trash it. My barbies that once filled the drawers? In the trash, never to be seen again. The movies I had grown up watching? Donated to goodwill. There isn't a clear sight of the tv, and who knows when there will be again?
The sunroom: Where I once learned to love thunderstorms. Where my mom would have me sit with her for hours at a time just talking and being comforted by the thunder and lightning as it flashed across the seemingly hundreds of windows. Where I spent every Christmas morning. Where there is no longer any space to sit. Where there is no longer a clear view of the beauty of the outside world. Where there is no longer a clear area for my cat to sunbathe. Where there is no longer a place to belong.
My bedroom: News to me, apparently we will be repainting it within the next week or two. The chalkboard wall that my brother draws a new picture on every time he visits, will be painted over, as if the exquisite drawings had never existed. The bright yellow walls that I try so hard to match my personality to, gone. Back to plain white, back to feeling trapped, like I'm living in a jail cell. I basically am...
My bathroom: Repainted and retiled. It looks amazing. That being said, I don't have a sink or vanity and likely will not for the next few months because of how scattered my parents are when working on making this house presentable enough to sell. Little do they know that while they're trying to sell my childhood, they're also stealing my happy memories, leaving me with the negative memories that I try so desperately not to focus on.
At least my parents have each other to rely on. Me? It feels as if I have no one. My siblings are all living the good life and have big boy and girl jobs, while I'm stuck wondering when the next time I'll feel free and comfortable in my own home will be -- Because it sure as hell doesn't feel like anytime soon.