On January 29, 2015, I bought my first home.
I haven’t moved in yet, because my husband and I are having a contractor do some renovations to create the perfect space for us. (Read: a nerdy, literary haven of Star Wars art prints, Simpsons collectibles, and built-in bookshelves.)
Being able to do this—to shape a building to suit our needs and lifestyle—is one of the best feelings I have ever encountered. I didn’t realize that I haven’t felt truly at home since I left my parents’ house for college. Once my parents moved out of my childhood home, I didn’t have a permanent space I could call mine.
Now, I do.
Even though this is an old, familiar feeling—home—it’s new at the same time. I’m rediscovering how rewarding it is to carefully arrange each piece of furniture, each piece of art, each action figure, rather than letting things accumulate haphazardly because I can’t give them a permanent place, so what’s the point?
With our huge yard, we can host summer bonfire parties, or better still, summer bonfire literary readings.
We don’t have to worry about putting holes in the wall of which a landlord would disapprove. We don’t have to worry about our dog chewing up the carpet, because we tore out all the carpets (vinyl and hardwood are way easier to clean than carpets when you have pets). We don’t have to worry about a handyman doing a shoddy repair job, because we can choose who works on our home.
Not everything we want to do will happen right away. We can only afford so much at once. But even if we could do everything we knew we wanted right now, a year or more down the road, we’d undoubtedly discover something else we wanted.
Creating home isn’t a one-time thing. It’s not like putting a puzzle together. It’s a never-ending process. We will learn and grown, and what we need out of a home will change.
While our contractor updates the wiring and removes the 1970s fake wood paneling, we’re packing our belongings (I can’t even count how many boxes of books we have), sanding cabinets and furniture, painting, plotting, and looking forward to creating our home anew each time we step back inside.