Today Steven and I began getting our house ready to sell. Our house is in complete disarray at this moment. There is no official floor to speak of in the living room right now. Paintbrushes are soaking in the bathroom sink. The dining room and our bedroom are full of furniture and odds and ends that usually make their home in the living room.
Yes, we are moving. Walking into the house this afternoon, the arresting smell of paint took me back to when we first bought this house almost six years ago, when we were painting over the white walls, putting our mark on a house to make it into a home. Back then we had no kids, and we used one of the bedrooms as a storage for all the boxes we hadn’t gotten around to unpacking. Madeleine, of course, forced us to unpack it all and we turned that room into the nursery.
I know I shouldn’t be sentimental. I mean, we’re staying in the Nashville area. We’re not moving to another state or country. But I can’t help it. We brought both of our children home from the hospital to this house. They took their first steps here, they said their first words here, and we became a family here. I admit I cringed a little as I painted white over our “burnt sienna” and “cider toddy” walls. In plainspeak, that’s burnt orange and golden mustard. Not your typical colors, but I always thought they gave the house a warm, comfortable, hobbit-hole feel. And now they are gone. As I painted the moulding around my bedroom door, I covered up little fingerprints (fingerpaint and I think chocolate) left by my little ones. It feels like soon I’m going to paint over all the memories we made here.
Moving to a bigger house should not drive me into such ponderings. I want a bigger house. I need storage. I need a pantry. The kids need a playroom. But there’s this teeny-tiny part of me that wants to stay in this little hobbit-hole forever.