What does "home" mean to you? Well it took 600', but I believe I have finally figured out what it means to me.
I have moved over 30 times in my life (I will be 40 years old in April). Thirty times! That number does not count the fact that I currently have two feet ~ one in Little Rock and the other in Caney Cave Hollow. That number also does not count for the fact that for awhile I had two homes as a child while my parents were separated. Suffice it to say, I have had a few "homes" in my life. For the life of me, I don't know if I have fully understood and appreciated the concept of HOME...until now.
Let me digress for a moment...
According to Merriam-Webster's Dictionary, "home" is defined as:
: the social unit formed by a family living together
a : a familiar or usual setting : congenial environment; also : the focus of one's domestic attention <home is where the heart is> b : habitat
a : a place of origin <salmon returning to their home to spawn>; also : one's own country <having troubles at home and abroad> b : headquarters 2 <home of the dance company>
: an establishment providing residence and care for people with special needs <homes for the elderly>
: the objective in various games; especially : home plate
— at home
: relaxed and comfortable : at ease <felt completely at home on the stage>
: in harmony with the surroundings
: on familiar ground : knowledgeable <teachers at home in their subject fields>
When I am very honest with myself, I realize that I have always had #1; I have always been searching for #2, and I believed I would find both at #4. Isn't that funny? I hope you are not laughing because the reality is that it really isnt' funny. Furthermore, it took a snow storm and a snow covered 800' extremely steep road for me to realize that I really did in fact have a home, not a house, not land, but a home...and it took the fact that I was fully prepared to do whatever it took to get down there; I was going HOME.
In the last few years I have had to learn some tough lessons about family, unconditional love, loyalty, home...and to be honest, I really thought I had learned most of those the hard way as a child. Boy was I wrong. How strange it seems to me to be learning so many basic lessons as an adult. I am a grown woman for goodness sakes. This is frankly...nuts. Well, I am having to suck it up.
Back to the story. Last night I stepped out of my Jeep 200' from the top and 600' from the bottom. The road was packed with snow and there was NO way to take it to the bottom. Wesley, my own personal knight, had met me at the top. He was going to help me get my luggage, briefcase, purse, etc. (not to mention me) to the bottom. We have no flashlight and there are no lights on at the workshop (at the very bottom). We don't even hear the pups. I step out nearly up to my knees (bear in mind I have driven in from work in Little Rock; I do not have appropriate snow hiking shoes or attire on), throw my briefcase/laptop bag over my shoulder like a messenger bag, grab my briefcase/purse, and shut the door. Meanwhile Wesley has lugged Big Red (my infamous rather large red suitcase) out of the back along with a tote bag and he is ready to head down. I look at him and then at the view before us. It is so very quiet. The only light is from the moon and it bounces off of all of the white snow. We are quite literally standing on the side of the mountain looking down into the hollow and the mountain on the other side. The bluff lines stick out due to the way the snow outlines them against the mountain. It is simply breathtaking. I take all of this in, look down that hill, and think to myself (and possibly out loud) ~ "What am I doing?" I cannot believe that I am going to walk down this mountain; I really can't believe I am going to subject Wesley to this (especially since he will have to hike all the way back up). Then the strangest feeling came over me...I just needed to get HOME.
Wesley told me today that he had told his mother this morning that I had acted just like her, his Grandpa Pate, his father...that I just needed to get home and "check on things". That is really good company, and I knew exactly what he meant. I simply smiled ~ inside and out.
I have spent most of my life as a gypsy, and I have embraced that part of me and my personality with a lot of energy and enthusiasm. I am here to tell you that the gypsy is not dead, but she has in fact, finally found a home. I have read that home means something different for everyone; I believe that...now. For me, home isn't a structure, it isn't a town, and it isn't a piece of land. Home, for me, is a feeling of peacefulness. Home is when my whole body and existence says, "Ahhh". Which it did, when I walked into my beautiful workshop, painfully (steps after that hill...killin' me) walked up the stairs, and entered my cozy, little home. :)
I remember Beci telling me once that I was "building a home". That statement seems simple enough, but in context (and knowing Beci), I know she knew then that what I was building was not a place but a feeling.
My wish for you is to find your HOME ~ whatever home is to you. To quote a beautiful line from a song written by Roseanne Cash, "God is in the roses...and the thorns." I have had, and needed, both in my journey.
Sunshine Dreams to You ~ Today and Every Day! :)
Labels: Beci Shipman Coffey, Caney Cave Hollow, Gypsy, Home, Roseanne Cash, Wesley