We moved at transitional times in my growing-up years. This topic and the theme of home have shaped my writing since I was fourteen. That was the year I began writing poetry. That was the golden year writing refined part of who I am.
Since then, there have been other refining moments. I consider those turning points of life: on Mount Laramie in Wyoming, the high school orchestra room where I met my future husband, a marriage tied with the common thread of living out a spiritual journey, my first real job as an editor, the births of my three sons, the confirmation of a special needs diagnosis, the publication of my first book, the realization that I had to set aside my own dreams and home educate my boys so they could live their own dreams. But, of all these turning points and others, the building of a nest often defined the days and shaped the moments.
This is our twentieth year living in our current home. Realizing I have lived in one house for two decades astounds me. Adding to that the number of years I have lived in the same county by including my early childhood years into middle school equates to thirty-two years. That’s most of my life. Yet, the remainder years of uprooting moves are what refined me. Those were the years I grew in spite of my best efforts to remain as I had always defined myself.
Yet, as with all nests, the sticks and stones, the bits and pieces, and the common threads weave within the structure of our daily gatherings. If we are wise, we value life’s muddiness that seeps into the cracks of our brokenness and fortifies us like mortar. This is the place we line with our own feathers providing comforting warmth for family, friends, and ourselves. Here we dine on early-morning spring worms and ripe autumnal fruit. We may fly to warmer climates, but philopatry call us back to where we breed our young and breathe deep year after year after year.
But, this is our earthen nest. Here is our temporary home. It is only fragments and frays mirrored in eternally-gilded mansion walls. There is where home becomes fully redefined.