Dear Home,I never felt like I had a home before I met you. I lived in the same small town for basically my whole life, surrounded by family, but I never felt at home anywhere until I met you at 18. You gave me the anchor I longed for, needed and never had before then. I felt like I actually had a family. I’ve always loved our little family. I loved the home you gave me. It made me feel so safe. We’ve lived in tons of different apartments on two continents, both shitty ones and gorgeous ones, but every place felt like home because you were there with me. “Home is wherever I’m with you” as the song goes.
Now my home is gone, well half-gone. I’m still here in the last space we shared, where I can still see you sitting on our couch playing Animal Crossing and see the splatters of paint and shreds of paper scattered about your office from your artwork. Your slippers casually sitting on the ground like they expect to be filled with your big feet at any moment. Our, or, I guess, my darling Dachshund still looking for you in every room. But it doesn’t feel like home anymore. You don’t feel like my home anymore. If I’m being honest, you haven’t felt like my home for a long time. In the last year, you’ve felt like a hurricane, an incredibly slow-moving, tremendously painful hurricane that slowly ripped away my walls of comfort and blankets of love. You rejected the home you gave me and the one we built together in favor of one that doesn’t have anything to do with me. The reasons you did this were good ones, but I still don’t know if I’ll ever get over it.
For now, I feel homeless. Living in a beautiful apartment full of gut-wrenching memories that’s too expensive and way too big for one person and a little dog. I have to move soon. I have to move to a place that doesn’t have anything to do with you. No memories of first and only Christmas trees, Star Trek marathons or knives hidden in old purses. It might be better for me, but it’s still going to be a tragic day when it happens.
The truth is, I love being a wife, love caring, sharing and loving another person. I loved you when you appreciated this and was incredibly disappointed and sad when you didn’t. I really miss you and the fun we had together, but I hope that if and when I find my new home, that home appreciates and loves everything I do. Maybe it'll be you again, maybe it'll be someone else, maybe it'll be nobody. I don't know.
Until then, and probably the most painful and difficult part about all of this, is that now I have to learn how to feel at home by myself. Find that homey feeling within somehow. Find it across the world from my actual family and many of the friends I’ve made in this fucked up life. Find it away from you. Am I strong enough? Am I brave enough? Am I confident enough? I guess we’ll see.