spencedaniel

Dreams really do come true. Keep dreaming!

Content to Stay Put

At my 15-year High School Class Reunion, I won the award for having moved the most times – 20 to be exact. A few years later, I moved one more time and haven’t changed addresses since then. I guess that makes me a bit of an expert in moving. Or at least it did. Now I’m more of an expert at staying put.

Over the course of my life, I have lived in small towns, in medium-sized cities, and in suburbs of much larger cities. I have lived in dormitories, houses, and apartments where I had roommates and places where I lived alone. My favorite home of all time is right where I live today. I may not always be thrilled with all the upkeep or the yard work or having sidewalks to shovel, but I truly love my home. Having a place to call my own and a roof over my head, with a bed to crawl into at the end of each day, fills me with overwhelming and heartfelt gratitude. My home or some part of it makes my gratitude journal on a regular basis. I know other people feel the same way about their homes too. Why else would HOME SWEET HOME be such a common phrase that is stitched on pillows and wall hangings and framed here and there.

What I’ve learned through the years is that I’m a city girl. Now I don’t mean a New York City-size city girl, although I happen to love NYC. It’s just to me, there are cities for visiting and cities for living in, and NYC happens to be one of my favorites to visit. I’ve often joked that if I had lived during the Little House on the Prairie days, I would have jumped at the chance to be the schoolteacher… in town.

For years, my daughter used to plead and beg to move. She liked the idea of having a new bedroom and house layout, and living in a new part of town, preferably in a neighborhood where some of her friends also lived. From her perspective, it would have been a grand adventure. From my perspective, I knew too well it involved far more than she could ever imagine. So at any suggestion or mention of the word moving, my head would start spinning. I was perfectly content to stay put. And I still am, at least for now.

I think if you asked anyone right in the middle of a move, how they felt about moving, it would be safe to bet the answer would be, “I never want to move again!” It takes time and effort and energy to look for a new place to live. And it takes time and effort and energy to pack and clean and move. And then, it takes time and effort and energy once you move, to make it a home.

Dorm Room w/out my Stuff

Dorm Room w/out my Stuff

It isn’t just the stuff; it’s the people that make a house or apartment a home. What has always amazed me is that it wouldn’t matter if every house was identical; every home ends up becoming as unique as the people living in it. I saw this first hand while living in the dorms at college. Except for an occasional difference in paint color (some rather questionable – see photo), in most cases every single dorm room was identical to all the other ones on all the other floors. Or at least that was the case until the students moved in and added their own personality and style and stuff.

Dorm Room with my Stuff

Dorm Room with my Stuff

Something happened during these past 20+ years. My daughter grew up and left home for college and finally got her chance to move. She didn’t just move once or twice either, but more than a dozen times. Fairly recently, she and her husband moved to a sweet little apartment – their first home. And although she knows firsthand all about the time and effort and energy involved in moving, she still sees it as a grand adventure. It’s just one of the many things I love about her. I’m also pretty sure if I asked her about moving, she’d say they were perfectly content exactly where they are…at least for now.

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