Today is the day I say goodbye to my first house.
It’s been a long goodbye, as I’ve been living in my new home for a few weeks now, paying flying visits to the old place while learning how to commute, be married, be a step-father. Life has changed a lot over the last couple of months – I live in a new city and my family’s got bigger – and my old house has slowly emptied as the new one fills up. Maybe there’s a metaphor there.
Or maybe it’s just a rite of passage. That’s nothing new – my old house saw my first attempt at making Spaghetti Bolognese, my first hosting of a family Christmas, my first kiss. That house holds a lot of memories and always will. Apologies to the new owner, but I’ll be fighting the urge to call it my house for a while to come.
So yeah, I got choked up as I turned off the light and locked the door for the last time. It was the first house I owned, after all, my first real encounter with grown up things like mortgages and multiple insurance policies. Your first house should have a level of sentiment attached to it, of affection and memory.
My new house is a blessing though, touched with the excitement of a new life and the frustration of plug sockets in weird places. We’re going to be happy there, unpacking all those boxes is just a step on that journey. It’s good – more than that, it’s awesome. A whole new life. It’s intimidating when it’s written down like that.
My first house will always be special though.
And it’s important to remember that while it’s a physical space in the universe, it’s not as important as the people who walked through its doors, the relationships and the memories that I want to remain. Life has changed but I hope that’s because it’s getting bigger.
But now it’s morning. The lights are off, the door is locked, and I’m walking towards a new horizon.