Sunday, April 23, 2017

Define Your Dash # 17: What was your childhood home like?

I feel like I had two childhood homes. The first one I remember was a duplex in Holiday. We lived next door to Marge on one side and Lamar Petersen on the other. I think the house only had two bedrooms and one bathroom. The kitchen floor was yellow linoleum. There were fake plants on the way down the stairs. There was a big room and a laundry room in the basement. The laundry room was olive green. I shared a room with Ben and Spencer. I slept on the top bunk in a bunk bed which I fell off of once and then only wanted to sleep on the bottom bunk. My parents room had a wooden floor (gees I must have spent a lot of time looking at the floor because that's mostly what I remember). I used to hide in my moms closet and put on her shoes to better disguise myself. There was a huge stereo in the living room that had flashing lights and a huge speaker. I remember having dance parties in there and crawling around by the speaker.
The duplex was on a corner lot. We did not have a backyard but we had slanty front yard where we could play in the sprinklers. There was also a light post on the corner of the lot that I rode into more than once when I was learning to ride a bike.
We lived really close to the Conders. Spencer and I used to play with Nathan and Sam all of the time. They had an especially magical backyard with a swing set, trampoline, climbing trees, fruit, a compost heap (I don't know I thought that was so cool), and a slightly forbidden wooden play house that we were not supposed to play in but did. Nathan and Sam lived next to the church which had a really cool parking lot we liked to adventure in. Part of it was elevated and very exciting for climbing and riding things with wheels. We also lived near a magical storm drain area that we called the wilderness and liked to explore.
I mostly remember playing all the time and being very happy here.

We moved into my second childhood home when I was seven. It was a mess. I remember sleeping in the living room on the floor once before we actually moved in to try it out. I also recall my mother painstakingly cleaning up all kinds of messes (from crayon on the wall to a shed full of somebody else's garbage) and eating loads of peanut butter sandwiches. I remember moving in and sharing a room with my brothers again. We had all of our beds upstairs and all of the dressers downstairs in the scary room (which later became my brothers' bedroom). The laundry room was especially frightening, so, my mom let us paint an under the sea mural on the wall. My parents still live at that house and it is 1000 times better than when we moved in.
Socially, this was a harder house to live at and lacked some of the "magic" of the first home. Here I didn't have ready made friends and had to work hard to make them. School was tougher and primary was different. My mother was so involved in our lives, however, that the scary stuff wasn't so scary.
I still love this house and associate it with joy, acceptance, and safety.

1 comment:

  1. your mom did a great job of transforming that current house. One of my favorite stories about your first house was when there was no window pain in the front door. You and Nate and Spence would climb out and play outdoors for a while and return to the house using the other door. When your mom caught you exiting the house through the hold in the door she didn't understand why you were exiting the house that way. You explained that you were playing "pre-existence" and that the hole in the door represented being born. You said that it was kind of hard going through the door that way, but that being born was probably hard, also. You have always been so wise beyond your years.