14 January 2011

Stability or stagnancy?

Last weekend, we welcomed a new microwave into our home because its predecessor experienced a slow, painful death.  And I'm no spendthrift.  I don't enjoy parting with money...unless it's an absolutely necessary, utilitarian item.  But I took comfort in knowing that our recently departed oven rendered 9 years of wonderful service.  And at that realization, I was in shock.  It meant that I have lived in this house for a longer span than I have lived anywhere else in my entire life.

My upbringing could be characterized as mobile, to say the least.  I switched countries; I transferred coasts; I moved from house to apartment and back again.  And let me tell you, an only child with natural tendencies toward solitude does not fare so well having to maneuver rapidly changing social scapes!  I imagine most people who know me now think that I'm rather outgoing but the truth is that I've learned to mask the shyness and hide the knots in my stomach when I encounter novel social situations.

Now I have what I have always wanted: roots.  I've made true and trustworthy friends in my neighborhood and I feel safe in relying upon their friendship.  And this house, this rundown, broken house, how I love this house--how I love this home!

I've met a lot of people who have what my mother always termed wandering feet.  They're the ones who don't want to be tied down--to be anchored.  They want to venture; they want AD-venture.  So it makes me wonder if this gift of roots that I've given my children will be interpreted less as stability and more as stifling.  I wonder if this mundane existence to which I'm so attached will be interpreted by the boys with disdain as limiting.

As usual, unrelated photos:



Ivan Chan Studio said...

Again, I thought I commented on this, but I think my subscription (which conveniently delivers your posts to my mailbox) makes me read it and talk to you in my head (where you are anyways and always!).

So--what I thought I said was: They'll go through different kinds of feelings about it, I'm sure. I still wonder about what my parents gave or didn't give me, and at different stages of my life, I've come up with different answers (usually it gets more empathetic for them).

I think I have happy, nomadic, wandering feet, although I've mostly been in one place for about two decades (interruptions here and there). Not that I don't get the urge to venture out.

I hear some places--and people--calling my name. It seems a shame not to respond in some way.

Lam said...

Having just completed another 2,100 mile road trip with the boys and continuing to revisit these places on our maps and in discussion, I hope it's a balanced view we're giving them. I hope they feel that distant shores are available and reachable, but feel like they have a safe harbor to which they can return at any time.