Today the house photographer came to take pictures of our home, he did a lovely job. Since we moved into this house it has not been this clean. We scoured every surface, emptied every bin, drawer, puzzle, and verified contents. We donated clothing and shoes. We purged and polished, organized and eliminated. We have been up late every night this week preparing for this moment. To be honest, clean houses are totally overrated. Yes, it’s lovely to feel like I live in a hotel, to walk into the bathroom and see nothing but soap on the counter. But this space no longer feels like my home and really, isn’t that a deeper meaning?
We’re preparing to share this space with the world, to sell it to the next family in need of a home. People who are not us but will fill the same cupboards and shelves with their belongings. People who will love this home and make it their own. That is what this exercise is designed to do, to remove the personal and create a blank slate where another family can see themselves living, laughing, and coming together.
It feels good to be done but this is the beginning of the cleansing, not just the surfaces and floors but the beginning of this home no longer being ours. We are moving toward our new home and towards what is to come, shedding our skin and stepping away from this home and the lives we have built together here.
When this ritual is all done and this space is ready for a new family to love, learn, and grow we will gone. We get to take the friendships we have made with our neighbors. We get to build something new and different. All of these are bittersweet gifts as the ease of, “I made too much dinner, please eat with us,” and unscheduled playdates that last until bedtime will no longer be part of our routine.
This home was a cozy cocoon that held us safe all through new parenthood, grief, resurrection, and the pandemic. It has given us more than we knew we needed. It taught us how to be good neighbors, the value of a good play structure, walking trails, and the beauty of a garden. It has given us everything we needed to thrive and we have been nourished and nurtured within its walls, climbing them like ivy until we found there were no more walls to cover, no more updates to make, and we are ready for wilder wider spaces.
I am so grateful for this home and its gifts. I am grateful for the people we have known, the first steps and parties, the blowout fights and crying fits, all of those moments have brought us to where we are right now and I am truly grateful that this space has been so patient and generous with us. We could not imagine where we are now when we began our journey of homeownership so I won’t project where we will be in the next ten years. I will only say that I am grateful, fortunate, and so humbled by all we have been given so far.