When I fell into my divorce, one unsure stumble at a time, I used a lot of momentum from other people to propel myself faithfully forward. Their clarity and my one bone-chilling thought of never giving our daughter a beginning in life. Somehow those things were all I needed to light the way.
I had no idea where I was going. I had no idea what would come of my decision. I had no idea how I would do it. Yet, I figured things out one good cry, one task and one problem at a time.
I began to make promises to myself and to Miss M. I promised she would have a back yard. I promised myself that I would have sex again. I promised we would live within our means and have that be enough.
I know– from this collective bank of human experience– that these past ten years of carrying my oldest that this time is hard, but short. Actually, I know these days are far too short. I know I will wish I was sleep deprived, frazzled, and that tiny limbs hang still hang on me well past the years this things make life challenging. I know I’m in the thick of the best of it.
I worked full time through most of it. Until the new house, which came with a backyard a little later than the mental deadline I had given myself and without my name on the deed, lead to a new baby. Just when I had resigned myself to a small space that meant our family was complete, Match and I were tired, lazy adults who found ourselves living the new-house-new-baby adage. Sometimes life makes other plans for you and usually they are far better than what I could have done all on my own.
And, as such, and I had my first baby who I didn’t want to leave. She was stuck to me like glue. So, we opted, with three kids, for me to not return to work. It was a concession on my part. My love and resentment of staying home are intertwined in a beautiful way. Contrary notions which is what most of motherhood is comprised of. Yet, two years into the change and on the cusp of doing whatever comes next, I see all the little ways it was meant to be. The beauty of having so much time and no time, of losing the fight to stay awake when I lay with heavy heads nestled on my chest, of Match and I meeting each other again and again in the middle. I see that my kids will remember me being around and that I didn’t miss much of these too short years which is what I want to carry with me as a legacy if I ever had to choose one.
Three years ago today, we packed our lives up into this new, slightly-too-small-house. We added a new human and a dog. My kitchen is also used as storage and an office. We’ve killed the lawn in the backyard between the dog and the kids. But this summer, my backyard echos with laughter, music plays from Bluetooth speakers, we have tennis balls in spades for a dog who never gets tired of fetch, and the grill sizzles as we make dinner. There is never enough money or time and the wish list is bigger than I’d like– but my kids will pass from babies to adults here. One building to return to as they leave us for adventures with friends, sports, and their own lives. One happy, messy, project riddled haven.
Happy Anniversary to these walls that loved long before we came along three years ago. I’m so glad we’re here to be loved now.
I’m so glad we’re home.