Or at least, I’m wanting to try again. Between the move, the hard drive crash, adjusting to new routines, and a wonderful fun life that’s not infront of the computer I’ve gotten out of the habit of writing every night.
Moving is always a little challenging for me. I nest. I burrow. I form strong emotional attachments to places, and it often feels as though the memories are linked to the physical place. In a way, the walls of home are more than just shelter from the outside world. Home is a feeling, but that feeling is strongly linked to places.
Seeing the bathroom door from one angle would remind me of Cameron bouncing away in the jolly jumper, hanging in that doorway. I’d peek out of the kitchen, and there would be the memory of Cameron tummy-crawling to find me. The right light in the kitchen, and the memory of friends gathered around the kitchen table would warm up the room. Step around the stove, and there’s the scent of the Thanksgiving turkey, and Janice cooking. I’d glance at the livingroom door, and recall Mom bringing me toast, cheese, and tea at 2am when infant-Cameron woke to nurse.
Without the physical supports, will the memories fade? Lose their clarity?
But then there are the other memories lurking in that old apartment. They’d been mostly tamed, trained to stay nestled in the shadows. That’s where they belonged. Those memories can fade, thank you, and I won’t miss them. I don’t need to remember the fights, the put-downs, the pointless criticisms, the fear, the eggshells I walked on to maintain what peace I could, the endless confusion as I tried to make sense of where I’d gotten myself. Walls can’t shelter you from the storms within them.
Wait. Before I go on, back to the happy memories. Cameron splashed with primary colours, fingerpainting in the sunshiney brightness of the kitchen in the morning. Christmas stars hanging in the living room window. Sitting with Cameron on the livingroom floor, all bundled up in a housecoat and towels, when I first realized – or perhaps accepted – that I loved him. Watching Alias with Chris, crocheting a baby blanket for Allison. Leif’s smile as he came up the stairs, and how good and right it felt to have him there. Cameron’s small but cozy room under the roof’s angle, nestled in all snug, listening to the rain pound above.
There. See? I still remember. I know, on a logical level, that the memories won’t disappear simply because I don’t live there any more.
So now I sit in my new livingroom, with only fresh and happy memories associated with it. Moving in (and the amazingness of Leif and my friends as they hauled my heavy stuff around), Cameron’s zeal while unpacking, cuddling on the couch with Leif while the fireplace warmed the livingroom, hanging christmas stars in the livingroom window. It doesn’t yet feel like home – we can’t quite settle in yet. The walls will be painted when we’re away, new blinds will be put up, I need to buy a bookshelf and a dresser. And there aren’t that many memories here yet. So when we return, then I can settle our things in, and start making here feel like home.