Lindsay Kriz: Home is what you feel

Lindsay Kriz

I could go with the typical cheesy “home is where the heart is” or “home is where you make it” lines, but I won’t, even though I just sort of did.

In the past few weeks, that sentiment is one that I’ve had to keep in mind when dealing with a dramatic change. So instead of talking about blogs, the new Hobbit Trailer, pointed ears or Chris Brown’s disgusting neck tattoo, I’m going to talk about myself. 

About 10 years ago, I unwillingly moved from my hometown of Lexington to Danville. My mother and I were on the hunt for the perfect home, going through multiple neighborhoods, visiting homes that smelled like cats, homes that smelled like spaghetti and had screaming children, you name it.

While we liked a lot of them, none of them seemed to exactly click with us. My family and I were getting a bit desperate to find the perfect home. We finally had the real estate agent take us to some houses that weren’t listed, the first of them being a bluish-gray two-story house in a neighborhood right across the street from the local schools. 

 The minute my mother and I walked in the door it felt just right — it felt like home. Something about the space inside seemed like the right space. It felt comfortable and warm.

      And it looked like a disaster. 

There were wallpaper strips everywhere, and the entire place smelled like cut wood. We both basically choked on dust when we walked in. The wallpaper designs made us both want to cry. 

But the feeling that both of us got from the place was too great to ignore, and I immediately went upstairs and claimed my bedroom.  My mom eventually painted that room blue with white clouds, just for me. That is why she is my favorite person in the entire world. That is why that house was, and is, one of my favorite places in the entire world. For 10 years it has been my haven. When I felt stifled at my dad’s house, I ran to my mom’s house. When my friends wanted to hang out, they always came to my mom’s house. “It’s always so light and open,” they said. 

Knowing that I will never live there again — knowing that my house will soon belong to someone else — has almost been too much for me to bear. It feels as though I have lost a loved one, only the loved one hasn’t gone away, but I have.

Then I realized something a few days ago: If I just sit back and close my eyes and pretend I’m home, I am. I don’t need to be in the physical place in order to feel the the way I’ve felt for 10 years. I need only remember. 

I have never felt so liberated.