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Monday, May 21, 2012

Is this home?

George has asked me many times, since we were married, the same question. He wanted to know if I felt at home. Since our marriage, we have lived in four houses and one business. He wanted to escape from our first new house in Cordelia, CA. because of the neighbor. The neighbor had ten barking Akitas. George couldn’t sleep or enjoy the backyard. It was a nightmare for him. After a few difficult years, we moved five miles away to a community called, “Green Valley Lakes.” We invested a lot of time (two years) and money into the yard with the hope that we would live there for many comfortable years.  After the koi pond and Japanese garden were completed, his employer closed the business and moved to Seattle. Even before that happened, George was complaining about the long commute and work. The “Green Valley” neighborhood was changing and George didn’t like what he was seeing.

He loved the third house, but he never liked the state of Washington. George spent every single minute of his spare time remodeling the house and I worked as his slave. The old and unique house was transformed into a beautiful home. We lived there for seven years. As soon as we finished remodeling, it was time to move. Every day he asked me, “Do you feel like this is your home?” Sure, I felt like it was home…the home that we invested so much money and effort, instead of going out and having fun.
A “home,” for me, was where George and the two dogs were. As long as we had a roof over our heads, and we were warm, I considered it home. That was never enough for him.
Today, after we came back from staying overnight at the business, he asked me again, “Do you feel like this is your home? Isn’t it good to be back?” Um…m, I am not sure this time. This house is far from being completed. There are still many boxes that can’t be stored because we cannot afford a garage. There is not enough closet space. We have rotted logs and leaks here and there. Usually, the older you get, the more comfortable you become, especially where you live. We are far away from feeling comfortable.
George, of course, said, “I feel this is my home.” After all of these years, he finally feels at home in the most uncomfortable, inconvenient, broken down house, we have lived in. I guess I have been trained well enough to switch to survival mode all of the time. My answer was…I just smiled. What else can I say?

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