A friend of mine recently came home. I’m writing this to and for anyone that has ever had that deep pull of “I just need to go home.” and for anyone that hopes to one day know how good that feels to have a place to ache after.
When I gave my Dad directions to go down the “Hutch” in a U-Haul (spoiler alert: they’re not allowed on the Hutchinson River Parkway because of low bridges) I never thought the truck would go back to Rochester…it did…I’m really glad.
Lexi was nearly 2, her crib had been recalled and there was a full bed in the basement of the tiny cottage we lived in from a lifetime ago and I took the crib apart, dragged the full sized mattress up the stairs with Val’s help and my girl was sleeping in a big girl bed. We were in Cos Cob, CT – life was in pieces. Lots and lots of pieces. Most of mine were broken. I had a friend that helped, that told me that I was worthy of wanting the life I had dreamt of, that helped me find a church, that assured me that I’d know where to go from here and helped me move a life I had built in one place to go to a place my heart needed to be to heal.
I remember the sting in my cheeks that happens when you’ve tried to hold back crying all day long. Walk to the park (don’t cry), go get a lemon bar (don’t cry), work (don’t cry), sing Mary Had a Little Lamb on the porch (don’t cry) it pulls a lot out of those cheek bones. There was a feeling of “I want to go home” in each moment and there was a pull from my ego from each moment more “going home is failing” it would say “they’ll think you couldn’t hack it” it would say next, “you’re not worth anything” it would say after that. But I knew. I knew that having my Mom hug me, having a bottle of wine with friends that have known me since my cheerleading skirt was WAY too short, that picking hot tomatos out of a garden and feeding the ducks on the canal would help.
I remember the day vividly. I decided I had to go home. It had to happen. I called a woman that I had worked with before that was SEVERAL levels above me and said “I need a job, I need to move back home and I need to know that I can support Lexi” and she said “yes, of course, yes, you have a job. Give me a couple of days and we’ll figure out where to put you.” And she did. If this woman ever needs a kidney, I’m a universal donor. I asked and it all happened so quickly. It was a blur honestly. In the span of five weeks I listened to my heart and decided to come home, started a new role that let me work from anywhere with stability that I desperately needed, someone I loved and had loved Lexi & I so well went to heaven and then we moved. Poof.
It was 10 days before the moving truck was set to return to Rochester and I still didn’t have a place for Lexi & I to go…we could have gone to my parents….but I wanted us to have a place of our own… my Mom saw a place on CraigsList that looked promising, went there hours later and called me on the phone to tell me about it and I rented it sight unseen. Lexi, Mandy, Oreo & Teddy and I moved in 10 days later…home.
I look back at the going home time and I’m just so ridiculously grateful that I did it. That Lexi turned 3 here – that we were literally surrounded by people that have loved us for being exactly as imperfect as we are since the day we were both born and that an ice cream truck came to our driveway, parked and everyone had their favorite sweet treat. Sometimes life is incredibly hard and sometimes an ice cream truck pulls into your driveway.