It’s funny how life works. A few weeks ago, I was beyond restless. I thought I needed to get out, move on, race forward. I wasn’t sure where I should go or what I should do but I knew I had an unshakeable desire to get out. I hated my house and was even growing disillusioned with my town. At home, my kitchen stunk because the layout and inefficiency meant I didn’t want to cook in it. I hated my bedroom because it was dirty and cavernous and just all wrong. I hated my office because it was cold and cramped. I couldn’t find a place in my entire house that made me feel content. I wanted out.
Now, I can’t wait to get back in. We’re on day eleven without power and while we were
stupid brave enough to stay for four days, we’ve been relocated for seven. First, we went to Maryland and stayed with my sister. She was gracious to take us in and we were so lucky to be warm and occupied for the weekend. Now, we’ve foisted ourselves on neighbors who couldn’t be more kind or understanding as our crap takes over their home. We’ll head next to my in-laws’, their basement becoming all too familiar once again.
We are cozy and warm and the kids are viewing this as a giant playdate, which is awesome. But, when I went home this morning to change out our dirty clothes for clean clothes, I burst into tears because the new unshakeable desire that has taken over is the one to get back into my house and stay there as long as possible. I wanted so badly to do laundry and bake a loaf of bread in my stupid kitchen. I wanted to straighten my kids’ rooms and put toys in their respective bins. I wanted to organize my awkward closet and then put on slippers and make tea and read a book on my ugly couch in front of my drafty window in my all-wrong home.
I thought of all the people who won’t have that luxury again. Yes, we’re inconvenienced, but the simple fact is as soon as JCP&L and the town of Red Bank get their shit together, we’ll have a home to return to. We’ll not just have shelter, but we’ll have warmth and memories and all that comes from a house that is filled with love.
I know I have places to go. I know I have bigger things to do, heck, we may even have more moves to make. But this storm, this power outage, this time of slowness and reflection has reminded me that I am very lucky to be exactly where I’m supposed to be…home.
P.S. Looking for more parenting guidance and tips for self-care? Check out From Chaos to Calm a guided training to help you feel better in this tough season.