Tuesday / December 27 / 2011
It’s a cold, damp night and I can tell by the needles hitting the roof that sleet has entered the race. I lean my head back on the headrest, watching the dotted white lines pass by like neatly arranged white ties hanging in a dim closet.
One hand gently petting the sleeping pup on my lap, my other, fully embraced with my husband’s. I smile as a small tear scrolls gently down my cheek.
“I miss him already,” I say to my husband about our son, who we just dropped off at the airport. “This makes me mourn that we don’t live in South Carolina near him.”
“You know what I was thinking?,” my husband questioned, squeezing my hand back. “I like Grant. I love him, of course. But I really LIKE him. How great is it to have come to a place with your grown children where you truly like them?”
We smiled in harmonized agreement, breathing in the shared like we have for our children, swapping stories from this past week we had all spent together, remembering the look on Grant and Brittany’s face when we shared various yes/no “surprises” with them.
“Surprises”, such as: no, you don’t have to caroling with us again this year… and no, we promise we won’t try to bribe you later with copious amounts of alcohol; yes, Santa is coming… and YES, Elf on The Shelf is STILL on duty; yes, we promise we’ll all get up Christmas morning whenever the first person wakes up… and yes, we realize our 16-month-old grandson counts as a ‘person’ in that equation.
“I’m homesick,” I admit outloud to my husband.
The knowing squeeze of my thigh, the slow blink-n-glance of understanding, and the soft smile on his face, all assure me he understood what I meant, even though we were, at that very moment, on our way to the home we had just left less than two hours ago.
The more Skip-n-I have moved from state to state, the more we’ve grown to love, Home.
Home is not sticks and bricks. Home is not something we’ve built using wood and nails. Home isn’t even Home simply because of the memories that were made within a particular abode. Those are simply houses. Skip-n-I have never fallen in love with a house. Yet we’ve always been in love with our Home.
Home, Home Sweet Home is wherever ‘you’ are. Thus, very naturally, Home changes. In this case of homesickness, ‘you’ is Skip + me + our children, where Home was only truly Home when Grant and Brittany were both there with us.
But life ebbs and flows. Babes grow and discover. Grant earned his undergraduate degree at the University of South Carolina and as recently as a few weeks ago, his Juris Doctor from the Charleston School of Law. Grant loves everything about the South, the climate, and beautiful women topping the list.
So, he’s a South Carolina boy.
We’re currently Upstate New Yorkers.
Which is why on a drive home I could remark, “I’m homesick.”
…and, in love with liking, truly liking my babes.