The day I left for vacation was quite odd. My wife had left for Williamsburg the week prior for a Teacher’s Institute, and the day prior I passed my kids off to their grandparents. When I returned home, the house felt different. I’ve been on my own before when my family got to visit my wife’s folks on long weekends, but this felt different. My family had scattered into three states and I was home by myself, getting ready to depart for Williamsburg myself.
As I completed packing and prepped the house to be empty for a week it seemed like everything was a final departure. I unplugged my son’s computer and closed his shades, but his energy was absent. I walked through my daughter’s room to make sure everything was unplugged, but her teen angst and artistic skill were hours away. I attempted to fall asleep in my bed, but the room felt empty.
The place was familiar, but without the people to make it a home it felt as though the house were saying, “You don’t belong here by yourself.” I guess this is a preview for college when the kids are gone for months at a time. I wonder how the kid’s rooms will feel then?
One thing is certain. Despite my penchant for being off by myself, my family is my anchor even more than location. It’s good to have it back together.