Eli was born there. It was small – small like the cabin my parents spent all their money and my childhood on. And small has always meant cozy in my world because of this country song about small houses and big love. There was a lot of love. And Eli was born into that squished-in beauty. He burst it out through the windows; you could probably have tasted it if you walked close enough. There was a lot of love.
And a lot of arguments at the top of our lungs. And a lot of apologies near the kitchen sink. With dishes piled high and babies sleeping on the other side of a thin wall.
There were strange noises and phone calls to crime check. There were drunks and addicts traipsing through on their way to or from hits – friendly and generous (do you want a drink?). There were delicious tomatoes that we popped like candies and put in every.dish. we made for months. It was the messiest kind of the most beautiful.
And the windows let in light from one of the darker spots in Spokane. Filtered through creaky glass it erupted the mornings in symphony; warm, yellow, yummy yummy melodies of good and right. Snow and rain danced like on a stage and I didn’t have to stare out those windows to feel comforted by their scenes.
But I did have to make sure the curtains were drawn at night.
We’ll miss that house forever, I think. We outgrew it despite our best efforts and we knew we couldn’t stay, but it was hard to let it go. We met our son there, we heard Raychel form sentences for the first time there, we had princess dances and high fevers and broken glasses and tons of spilled milk there. So much milk.
We made a home there and I am growing very tired of leaving homes. Even when it makes the most sense. Even when it will save us money. Even when we have to. 9 moves in 8 years is wearing on me. I don’t really get ancy to go like some people do, moving is almost always difficult for me. I am a nester… I pour my heart into a place, I consider every rug, every lamp, every picture frame carefully and I take deep delight in making a place feel cozy. A love language of decoration.
And even though the things come with me, what we create is integrated with the walls and floors. It’s home and it takes time t build. So every time is like tearing down a nest. It hurts in a primal way. Even when I’m excited for new possibilities, I ache for the loss.
So this is my aching for the little yellow house on 8th Avenue. For all the factors that anyone from Perry knows could have compromised it, it was precious and wonderful and every bit as romantic as I’ll want to remember it.