Promises

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This is my beautiful house, the photo taken last spring when the azaleas bloom in east Texas. This house was built in 1936 and we are but the fourth family that has lived in it. Dr. and Mrs. Page built the house and lived in it for many years, selling it to Mr. and Mrs. Harwood who lived in it for a few years until they divorced and sold to Dr. and Mrs. Hayes, who lived here several years, selling to us before they built a larger home at the lake. We have been here for 16 years. It is a very very big house for three people, but we have loved it and made a few improvements, redoing two bathrooms, replacing the roof damaged in a hailstorm, as well as the original driveway.

Previous owners added a new master bathroom, closet, computer room, laundry room, back entry way and breakfast area, fourth bedroom and bathroom. The kitchen is in desperate need of a suitable remodel. The cabinet doors do not close. The appliances are all circa 1980 and the exhaust fan for the stove does not work. We did replace the dishwasher. The microwave sits atop this rigged-up shelf which someone placed in such a way that my spice cabinet door will not open all the way. We replaced 35 windows in the house, which has over 50. We replastered several cracked ceilings. We planted scores of azaleas and other garden shrubs. We have taken loving care of the trees and flowers.

When we moved to this town nearly 19 years ago it was not by my choice. Master came here for his work. I was miserable for the first 9 months, being away from my family and friends, not knowing a soul, stuck in the house with a one year old. I cried every day. We saw a counselor a few times and I finally realized I needed to be a big girl and find a way to bloom where I was planted. My girl grew old enough to go to preschool/daycare, where she blossomed and learned. I joined a few groups and met friends I still have. I became active in my new community doing philanthropic work. We joined a congregation.

But… Still I longed for the smell of the ocean. My friends’ faces. My brothers. My dear parents. All the large and small things one misses when you are used to being a big city girl most of your life! I missed going to concerts and plays, sporting events, eating “good” food at ethnic restaurants… etc etc etc.  Not the least of which, the many and varied shopping opportunities. Things one takes for granted in a city, but not so much in a small town out in a semi-rural area. I am quite certain that a country girl dropped into a big city would feel the precise alienation and weird loneliness I felt on a constant basis. It was just unrelenting.

Master made a promise to me that this would not be our permanent home. He hoped to get ten, maybe 15 good years of earning here. Well, we have been here almost 19. During that time, my dear dad passed away, I was diagnosed with breast cancer, and eventually my mother moved here to be near as our girl grew up.

Yesterday, a For Sale sign was placed in front of our house. It’s with many mixed emotions I finally write the words, “I am going home.”

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