In happier at home, Gretchen Rubin writes about choosing a theme word for a year. For 2013, my word is home. I have never shared a home with anyone before, and it has been a long time since Chris has had a home. The apartment was my home, the house is ours. I see that now, why when moving he seemed to fight me at everything packed, except the books, he wanted our things in our new home, not mine.
In my mind I carry the image of what the house looked like for the open house in August, and I struggle to make the house look like that always, and I beat myself up when it doesn't. Part of me knows that is unrealistic, but another part of me knows that if I just keep trying, it will look like that. The two parts of me are constantly at war. I think I need to be content with two rooms, not the whole house. Because a home is more than what it looks like, it is what is inside the house. The laughter, the conversations, the contemplations. I want those things as well.
I want our home to be a refuge, a sanctuary, a place of calm and order and love. Clutter and mess and dirt interfere with that. But, I need to be sure to be mindful that the house is that for both of us. Chris needs me more to sit and listen to him, than he needs the counters to be spotless.
Either way, we both need home to be a place we want to be, like when we got back from Christmas. The look on his face when we walked in the door was relief and elation.