I sold my house last week, the house that I thought I would grow old in, where I would watch my pecan seedlings grow into productive trees. As grey hairs and wrinkles accumulated I would wake to the sun rising over the same pond, I would walk down the same driveway and tend the same garden. Instead, six and a half years after moving into what I called my forever home, I watched as movers emptied the place.
Life doesn’t travel that path I plan.
I knew that moving day was going to be hard even though I had been preparing for a year. Between the packing and cleaning, there were tears, the grief of letting go of a place I love. My first breakdown happened while I was in the kitchen and I looked up to see Domino lounging on his bed on the porch. He’s spent more than half his life here and I was flooded with guilt for taking this place away from him. A place where he has all the space and freedom a dog could want, filled with countless critters and scents. I know he will always want to be wherever I am, but it’s hard to imagine a better place to be a dog.
I began my long list of farewells: to the screened porch where countless cups of tea were consumed, the kitchen where thousands of meals were prepared, to the garden that nourished me, to the pond that provided a beautiful backdrop and a chorus of geese and frogs in the summer, and to the wildlife that made for interesting walks.
I remember when we (the Ex and I) first visited this vacant land, how we fell in love with the place. We didn’t need to look anywhere else, this was home. We watched with excitement as our house and life took shape. It was a lovely dream and a life I was content with, but it wasn’t meant to be. I can’t resurrect a dream that is dead. This place was our forever home and I had to accept that it can’t be my forever home alone.
As I sat on an empty porch and watched my last sunrise here, I tried to ingrain this place into my memory. With farewell to my forever home came a final closing of a chapter. New chapters await; there will be more gardens and homes and adventures. This place will always be a part of me and I will always be a part of this land as well.