I signed my name on the dotted line. My parents’ last name, finally, rather than his. It’s taken me this long to even get my own identity back on all my identification.
The house is mine.
Bought with my own money. Bought with my own choices and my own decisions. It’s the first house I’m buying that’s truly mine. The first house that doesn’t have my ex-husband or father or backing from a generous relative on the deed.
It’s scary. Exciting, but scary.
I looked for a house with room enough for all of my children. The bathroom links two rooms together, and I imagine scolding my kids as they run between rooms when they should be sound asleep in bed. I hear their giggles, their shushes, their express footsteps before I open the door. Secretly I’d relish the opportunities for extra kisses, extra hugs.
In my heart of hearts, I know those two rooms will be unoccupied. Maybe I’ll start putting extra furniture, or one of those sale item treadmills from a sweaty gym. I know I won’t get to share the rooms I picked for them.
They’re never coming.
So my home, my happy own home, isn’t totally mine. Part of me will always be many miles away, a place where my heart is. One foot in frumkeit, the other in freikeit. Just like my home.
Maybe one day they’ll want to find out who I am. When that happens, I’ll be ready with two rooms and many lost years of love to show them.