I knew from the very first tour, that our home was (is) – in fact – ours.
The layout was wrong. There was water in the basement, and piles of dirty things in the bedrooms. You couldn’t open the stove and the bathroom door at the same time. It smelled, and had pests.
Nonetheless, it was ours.
The worked started the very afternoon (April 3, 2007) that we got the keys, and in a sense hasn’t stopped.
Yesterday I woke up knowing (like the way I knew that first time the realtor walked us through) that my work of the day was to give back to this place, that continues to give so much to me.
Now, I should confess that housework usually repels me. It has, for as long as I can remember, been a chore. Something I “had to do,” because company was expected, or I lost something, or I just couldn’t stand the mess any longer.
Organization (or rather really facing and accepting what is calling out to be organized) tends to not only dull me – but stress me out.
So, instead of acknowledging the stress, I often (choose to) ignore it.
But, yesterday something shifted.
For the first time (possibly ever?) really going for the cob-webbed corners and backs of the cabinets, willfully venturing under the beds and deep into the closets, did not feel like a chore, but rather, like a labor of love.
With every disgusting thing I confronted a sign of gratitude almost immediately followed. Forgotten pictures of never forgotten loved ones. Love letters from the beginning. The very (very) tiny sweater my grandmother knit for our very (very) precious preemie.
And, after more than six hours of scrubbing and loving I was left feeling full and fueled. And happily surprised by the $45 in unused Starbucks gift cards that my husband found in a box that looked as if it’d been slowly corroding over the last three years.
So, I pampered our house, and she in return treated us to some fancy tea and coffee and organic dark chocolate peanut butter cups. And all I could hear as we indulged was:
Our house is a very, very, very fine house.