So, my husband and I are in the process of moving across town and I can’t lie. It’s been pretty stressful. I tried to be smart about it by packing three months ahead of time, slowly packing one room up at a time. Today we just moved all of the boxes into the new garage. While my husband and father-in-law were taking the packed/overloaded trailer to the house, I volunteered to go grab lunch at the McDonalds on that side of town. It was then that I realized something pretty significant about this move. It’s brought me full circle in my writing career.
Let me start from the beginning. This house we’re moving into is actually my mom’s. She built it when I was in 3rd-4th grade and she still owns it. We moved away to Oregon at the end of my ninth grade year because she was getting married to my step father that lives up there. I practically grew up in that house. It’s perfect to me. It has a fireplace, an in-ground pool in the backyard, a huge kitchen, an office perfect for crafts and most importantly it has so many memories. If walls could talk, you’d be laughing, crying and pretty disturbed by what they could tell. The townhome my husband and I live in right now is far too small for us and we’ve outgrown it. My mom’s house was being rented out and was to become available in April so we jumped on the chance to live there. She worked out a deal for us that we could have it for the same rent we have now and I can’t put into words how excited I am to live there. Did I mention it’s right around the corner from the library?
Anyway, what I realized today is not only did I grow up in that house, but it was in that house that I became serious about writing. I started my first book in that house. And everything around that house (the library, the school, the Winn Dixie, the Mexican restaurant and so much more) had a vital role in the creation and planning of that first book. Half of “Enigma” takes place in the very same high school I went to and the characters go to all those places I mentioned. The way the town is set up, all of this is on the north side of town and we currently live on the south side of town. I never had to go north unless it was to visit with the in-laws. Where we’re moving to is laden with so many memories and every street, every building has such a weight to it that at one time it was overwhelming.
When I stopped writing cold-turkey, I absolutely HATED going on the north side of town. I remember one time driving past the high school and actually weeping because of all the things it meant to me. It reminded me of a happier time in my life that I thought I would never go back to. I didn’t want to because I felt it would be too painful to open those wounds again. However, now that I’m writing again, those wounds have healed and the nostalgia that comes with seeing that brick building and bulldog statue doesn’t sting me like it used to. Driving past the library doesn’t hurt anymore. When I walked around in the house during the inspection, I didn’t feel that punch in the gut. I felt peace and excitement knowing that I would be coming back to where it all started. My old bedroom where I used to write is going to be my writing room and I’m sure I’ll post pictures of it in a later blog.
The old stigma of “you can’t go home again” is totally bogus to me. Home is where I’ll find myself again and continue what I started so long ago. Sure, some memories are a little painful still, but I’ll be too busy making new ones to even care. It’s almost like I’ll be gaining a part of myself back that I left behind seven years ago when I moved away from this town. It’s laughable how back then I wanted to get away so badly and see the world. Now all I want to do is go home because the world just isn’t appealing to me anymore. Who needs the world when all I need is my imagination to take me places a passport can’t?