Today my Grandmother is moving out of the house that she has lived in for roughly twenty years. My Grandfather built that home with his bare hands, and for a child that lived in various apartments over the years, it was home. There is a little cement sidewalk along one side and if you know just where to look, my little five-year old hand print is stamped into one corner of it.
Many of my summer days were spent sitting on the back porch reading a book in companionable silence along side my “Poppa” or laying in the hammock listening to Rush Limbaugh blare from the radio in the barn where he worked on a project. And believe me, he always had a project going! I had so many days of running around outside with my cousins, accumulating dirt and melted popsicle juice on my skin and clothes. It was all good, though, since Grammy would bathe me in the jacuzzi tub.
I find it very difficult to fathom the thought of another family in this house, changing things and making their own memories where mine still linger. I know it is the right thing, and it is what my Grandpa had wanted my Grandma to do. But you know what? It kinda sucks.
I take comfort in the fact that several weeks ago I had one last magnificent visit to the house. I got to sit on the front porch and watch my daughter run outside with my younger cousins. The three boys chased her around and doted on her the way that my boy cousins, Chris and Nick used to do with me. It was a wonderful feeling for me that my little girl got to experience this place of childhood wonder as I once had. Even if it was only once, it was better than never. I feel very fortunate that I got to share that with her. Today, as I mentally say goodbye to the house (doing it in person just isn’t the same when it sits empty) I can let it go knowing that she had the same joy there that I once did, and knowing that no matter where I am I will always hold my Poppa in my heart.