I laid still in my silent bedroom. The floor stopped creaking, the heater clicked off. I couldn’t hear the wind, but I could see it blowing in the trees in the sliver of window space the curtains revealed. I don’t come home too often these days, but when I do I like to just sit and look. All the things I’ve collected, the pictures accumulated on the wall, all the years of heartbreak and happiness that have gone by here with only a few tear stains and trinkets to show for it. Eighteen years have gone by in what felt like only three or four. What I don’t understand is how that time slipped by so quickly when each day felt so long. The restless nights, the overwhelming responsibilities, the confusion; maybe that made it all flash by faster in the long run. But it certainly made each hour feel like a million.
Ellie Goulding’s acoustic cover of Your Song hums through my headphones, putting me in a pensive, almost drowsy mood. I pull the covers over me, remembering my younger days when I thought a blanket would keep me safe from any danger lurking in the dark. But now it’s what’s outside that scares me. The cold wind nips at my nose and fingers as I walk to the car, the blustering pushes my car a few inches out of its lane. Nature doesn’t have any regard for humanity, it just pushes us along like everything else in the world. If we’re out in the cold long enough, it feels like it has sunk into our bones and our blood runs like ice. We have to find shelter from the wind, and get warm again. I guess that’s all this old room actually is: a haven from the cold. That’s the essence of a house, really. That’s all this house ever was for me growing up; it felt more imprisoned than comfortable. It’s taken me a long time to realize it, but now when I come back every once in a while, it feels like a home. A home is more than warmth, it’s comfort. Though it may house strife and anger every now and again, a home – this home – is a place of joy and life. And for the first time in forever, I feel safe here.