“Home is where your story begins.” ~anonymous
Our home is the beginning of our story, but our life together is the story itself. We are a small, sometimes untidy, and a bit unruly but mostly a happy bunch of nuts from the same tree. Life in our home, inside the intimacy of our walls knows no limits. Why, because our home has never been contained by four walls.
When I look at my husband I see the man who offered me his name, never insisting I take it. I see the man who became the father of our children, giving them his unconditional love. I fall in love with Johnny even more when I watch him engaging with our boys. I have watched him grow as a father, losing some battles only to find his footing again becoming stronger. As a mom, I sit back and watch a lot. You know what I see? I see a man who loves his boys more than himself. A man who is proud of the men they are becoming and I see a man who would sacrifice anything for their good. I also see the interactions, how our boys respond to and in many ways are so much like the man I love. When I look at my children, at our boys I see how tall they are, how grown up they have become. I see the little boys they once were and the men they are now becoming. I admit, I’m a proud mama but I’m also very humbled by the paths they are taking in life. Perfect? Nope, some days are downright difficult if we’re being honest. But then the truth is raising free thinkers is never painless or uncomplicated. The rewards of raising kid who think for themselves is worth their weight in gold. They tend to be creative souls, artistic and sensitive as well as discerning. Our boys, they are remarkable, and yet they are exceptionally humble. Even now, at the ages they are family is everything to them. Sure they most definitely do their own things. With one almost done with high school and the other in college you can believe they are busy living their own lives, going in their own individual directions. But I know if Johnny and I have done anything right in raising our two boys, it’s this; we’ve instilled a sense of home and family.
Even after all these years I’m still asked every night, “what’s for dinner mom?" And yes, corny as it sounds every night we still sit down together and share a meal. We still pack up the car and head to the coast, head to the country house or we simply sit down and watch TV together because it only feels like home when we’re together. Family is everything and in that we have the world. This is the thing, home, for us anyway, isn’t just a place… it’s definitely a feeling. Home is the part of us that feels we belong, that we are safe, finding warmth, acceptance and understanding. Home is absolutely the best part of who we are is it not? It’s where we can be real, throw off any baggage from the day, be honest with our feelings, and say anything or nothing at all if we want. Home is not four walls, a yard and a place to sleep. No, home for me anyway, is where we love unconditionally. And that can be anywhere and everywhere as long as we’re together. At the end of the day what I know is this: When I’m with my boys, with my husband, it feels like home. Proverbs 24:3-4 says, “Homes are built on the foundation of wisdom and understanding. Where there is knowledge, the rooms are furnished with valuable, beautiful things.” As for our home, when I evaluate what really matters or the true worth of what we have I'm aware how right Proverbs really is. Why? Because our home is filled with precious, valuable and beautiful memories that we will carry with us always despite whatever four walls physically surround us.
See the home we’ve made together is uniquely our own. The life we’ve built together has been an adventure filled with ups and downs, highs and lows. Our marriage, our family is nothing like our parents or theirs before them. Though, our lives, our family and our marriage is in no way lacking their influence. Johnny and I each brought pieces of ourselves, parts of our own families with us. But we built our own life, together, set apart and set the ships we sailed in on, on fire. Both Johnny and I come from loving, devoted, supportive, nurturing, motivating and uplifting homes. Not perfect, but homes full of love and joy, hope, faith, comfort and happiness. We were both taught loyalty and the philosophy that family is the most important part of who you are and making your house a home. And that’s why for us home can be anywhere. It’s why when we come through the door every night, we know we’re home. It can feel like home whether we're fishing along the coast or trekking through the woods together. See “happiness doesn’t have an address.” No real happiness lives within us.
Life lesson #92 ~ my family just feels like home. When I look at my husband, my children “I can feel it, I’m home.” When I see my family, when I sit with them, laugh with them and dream dreams with them it just feels right. They are my home, they are my everything. Yes, home will always be found inside our hearts and never, ever restrained by the confines of four walls.