Home–I want to go home.
You know that feeling when you had the extra glass of wine, when you skipped dinner and thought, “oh I’ll be okay” and then you were not okay? That moment when you are walking home because thank God you did not drive and you can only think of home?
I had that moment when I should have stopped at one Pinot Gris but didn’t. When I missed all the loves of my life and all the houses that were once home. I pictured all the doors I walked through and all the ways I came home. I saw my dad in his suspenders with his cigarette in the ashtray and his cards in his hand saying..”come on..what’s your move? I suppose you got all night?” I saw my mom in the kitchen, “Hi, honey–I’m making strogonoff..could you start the salad?” I saw my husband in his blue and green checkered pajamas, no shirt, it’s too hot–“where were you? You can’t answer the phone?” I saw my daughter in her little pink robe with a glass of wine, “Hi mommy–did you have fun?”
I saw them all, missed them all so that when I hit the door to my current apartment with nothing but their ghosts I was in despair. They are not here. None of them are here. I am home but not home. How does one go from such connection to this–the solitary life? I keep missing small things like the vast array of hair gadgets from my daughter, I miss the towels on the floor I complained about, I miss being in trouble for coming home late, I miss my husbands irritation and my son always understanding everything. There is no one here to be annoyed or understanding, no towels on the floor, nothing to complain about. Not one living thing but me. Is this home? I hardly think so.
Life is connection. Life is the messy business of making the connections between you and another living thing make sense. People have dogs and cats. It’s a way. They have a living thing which depends on them but won’t really yell at them. I think its cheating and sometimes I think when pet owners talk about their “babies” they are lying to feel better like Christians talking about heaven, but who cares? They feel better. They are home. That’s what matters.
I don’t have anything to lie about. After all the years of connection I am a space person untethered from the mother ship floating alone in the dark. I cannot pretend I have connections or that anyone needs me. They do not.
But I do have this–I realized on a sub atomic level that what Buddha said about suffering is truer than I thought. He said two things cause suffering; craving and aversion. Translated that means wanting or fearing. All suffering. That means every speck of it..body, mind, spirit..individually and collectively. If we do not want what we do not have or fear what could be we would not suffer. Not any of us in any way.
Take a minute to think about that. No suffering if we are willing and able–no suffering.
So why do I suffer? I want those I love to be with me. They are not and will not be. Some are dead, some are ill, some have moved on. Wishing that to be different is suffering. Fearing dying alone is suffering. Suffering, however, is not necessary.
I could embrace what I have. I could forget fear since it’s a phantom. I could skip suffering.
I want to go home.
I feel the keys in my hand and I’m so grateful for them. They are smooth and accessible. I unlock the door and see my little Zen kitchen. I escape to my cot and my keyboard and you.It’s not what I pictured, it does not contain all those I’ve loved exactly..but sort of since I keep them in me..and I realize for certain that home is where I am because scars and all I am me and I love that.
I am home—to me–finally.