I love when writing leads to discovery and growth, and I feel that this has been the case for me over the last few weeks. These small treasures come out in the places I least expect.
I was working on a writing exercise in a Mindful Journaling workshop while I was visiting my parents in their new-to-me home in Venice, Florida. We were charged with making a list of things around us that appealed to our 5 senses. Since I was writing, some of the things around me were familiar, such as my journals, pens, and phone. However, some of the items were foreign because of my setting, including a succulent, flip-flops flipping, the washer humming, a wall clock, and more.
As I reviewed the items and then started to write from one, I discovered something very important. Here is my writing discovery:
Grilled cheese! Made for ME by my dad!
Usually, I am the one cooking for everyone else. It is a rare treat to have something made for me. Although when I am with my parents, they still try to take care of me even though I am 50 years old.
I struggled with their move from Connecticut to Florida. I knew I would not see them as much because of the distance. I was afraid of losing another home, a place where I felt safe, comfortable, and taken care of. The idea that I could just get in the car and visit my parents or call them if I needed them always provided me great comfort. They have always been there for me and my family.
In Connecticut, my parents lived in the town where I spent my early childhood, got married, and baptized my children, and they lived on the hill next to my great grandparents’ house. It is the place of my roots, and I have always felt a special connection to that place.
Ambivalence swept over me as we were driving to Florida; I was afraid that their house in Venice would not feel like home. I had only been there one other time since their move over two years ago. Honestly, I have felt a bit lost without them close by in Connecticut.
However, sitting there, still and present, I felt comfort surrounding me. In that mindful moment, I realized that home is not a particular set of four walls measured by time and place but rather any four walls containing the people you love.