The weekend is sadly over. It’s amazing how fast three days can just zip by when you have a lot of things to do. We’ve been busy cleaning out our family home so we can get the house on the market – and get it gone.
Saying goodbye to our beloved family home was a real struggle for me at first. Mum died in 2014 and the house changed after she left us. It just wasn’t the same. We missed her vibrant energy. The house was mum’s. She made it “home.”
Now – it’s just a house full of memories.
When mum died, I couldn’t bring myself to go through her belongings. My dad insisted that their closet be cleaned out of her things. I just wasn’t ready yet. I almost missed the second cleaning due to a migraine.
But this time – I had my chance at picking what I wanted from the house. And with the help of my siblings, I had all the furniture and kitchen items brought home to my condo.
I still have some unpacking to do. But my poor knees quit on me tonight. I unpacked four boxes. Mostly kitchen tools. Dishes. Glasses. As I unpacked, I smiled and my heart melted as I found some items that I had forgotten that I had packed up over six months ago.
My mum had great taste when it came to kitchen supplies. They weren’t top of the line items, but the dishes and sets she bought were made in the days when products were made to last a long time.
Not like today – where most things break within the first year or two of purchasing them. I’m looking at you Ikea. Your dishes are crap. Crap. Dishwasher proof my ass.
As I unpacked the boxes and filled my shelves with glasses – I also filled my shelves with memories. Memories of family dinners. Memories of mum cooking in the kitchen – something she loved to do. Memories of dad and I sitting at the kitchen table drinking coffee at 6:30 in the morning.
Now that the furniture is all set up – it’s like mum is living with me now. There are reminders of her in everything. Every bit of furniture. Every glass. Every plate.
There was no sadness as I unpacked the boxes. Instead, I felt comfort. It was like she was standing behind and had her hand on my shoulder as I placed her favorite ceramic tile art behind my sink. Just like she had it set up in her kitchen.
I stepped back to admire the blue flower and smiled.
All the sadness and stress I’ve felt about selling the house was instantly gone. I realized then – the house is just a house. Sure – it was our family house and home. But now – it’s just an empty house. Someone else will move in soon and make it their new home.
Home – that’s wherever my mum and dad is. And now – mum is at home with me. Every where I turn – I see memories of her.
I let it all go. Every negative thought I had about the house. Every negative thought I had about my family. Any emotion I had tied to our family home – I let it all go when I walked out the house and locked the door – for perhaps, the very last time.
We still have some work to do. We still need to clean the house. But we’re almost there. My family has done an amazing job coming together and cleaning out nearly 80 years worth of – stuff. It wasn’t easy. There were tears along the way. But we’re almost there.
After my family left the house on the weekend, I stayed behind and walked through one last time. I pulled out my phone and recorded a voice message. This is something I used to do when I was obsessed with ghost hunting and paranormal activity. I’ve given that up now. I have no idea what I believe in anymore.
But I spoke to the house. I blessed it. I cut off ties with it. I told the house that I didn’t want anymore dreams about it. I didn’t want anymore nightmares. Whatever negativity was attached to the house – I wanted no part of it. Whatever might be dwelling there – I was done. I was finished. I wanted to move on with my life and… mostly – I wanted to let it all go. I just wanted to let all that shit go.
I said a little blessing. I banished whatever negative energy might still be in the house. I made my peace with it. And I just let it all go.
When I walked up the stairs and towards the door, I glanced around the house one more time. All the memories of my mother came flooding back in that moment.
I could see her sitting on the wooden bench to put her shoes on. She was wearing her pink rain coat, pink shoes and favorite sweater. She was smiling up at me.
The bench is now sitting in my front entrance. Now, it’ll be me sitting down on the bench, putting my shoes on. Just like mum did. The bench was something I had always wanted to take home with me. I’m in awe of how such intense emotions can be tied inanimate objects.
It’s just a bench after all. To anyone else – it’s a bench. But to me – it was mum’s bench.
Today, I feel lighter. I no longer feel sadness when I think of my mother. For every where I look, there is a piece of her with me.
And every time I step in my kitchen to make a meal, I hear her voice singing along to Dena Martin’s “That’s Amore,” as she was rolling dough for her famous Bumble Berry pies. We used to love working together in the kitchen while listening to music. Songs from crooners like Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Jimmy Durante, Connie Francis, and Vera Lynn.
This music still makes me tear up. And I always think of mum. Who loved to sing even though she was tone deaf and couldn’t remember the lyrics. What I wouldn’t give to hear her voice singing to me now.
Mum, I love you. Home is wherever you are. And I know you’re here with me now.
I’ll see seeing you.