The House That Built Me
I'll never forget the last time I walked out of my childhood house. I was home from college for the weekend. For whatever reason, my mother and I had been arguing, and I stormed out angry. When it finally hit me that the next time I longed for home I would find myself in another house, my heart completely sank. I sat outside, hiding myself between the one foot wall separating the garage doors, put my head in my hands, and sobbed. I knew, through my immature actions, that this was not the way to leave. My pride, however, kept me from reentering my house. And I left.
I left. Those words....that memory...still aches my heart with grief. I think about going back there often, knocking on a stranger's door, explaining who I am. Each time I am in town, I drive by and notice from the outside alone how much it has changed, and decide that I don't want my memories to be clouded by foreign images.
When I heard this song, it took me back. I am so thankful that no matter how far we are in life, we can close our eyes and find our way back home. When I close my eyes I find myself in my favorite childhood memories: Climbing pine trees all day long. Making forts underneath out of all the pine needles. Sappy fingers. The grove behind our house and the wild turkeys that would make it their nesting place by day. Sitting in, what felt like, a field of buttercups behind our home....and picking them out of our neighbors yard to bring home (which I'm sure they loved). The fresh smell of the mowed grass every weekend. Playing with the neighbors till dark. Riding our bikes everywhere. The color of the trees in autumn. The fresh air up on the mountain. The quietness and stillness up above city life. My moments with God on the brow....finding peace in all his beauty. Jumping off the back of the shed into our pool. Laying out on top of the shed. Water volleyball parties. My maple town world in our guest room closet. Playing on the stone wall, watching everyone enter the neighborhood. My church family. Carabining off the tennis wall...which I later knocked down with the car. The baseball field Dad made.......
I feel like I could go on and on and on. I was very blessed with a wonderful, loving, safe home. I love it so and cling to my memories because they made me who I am today. Sometimes I do feel a bit lost, not being able to go back to the place that stores so much of my heart. Yet I am so blessed that I don't have to go far to find it again.
"Won't take nothing but a memory, from the house that built me."