Making My House My Home

ApartmentYesterday, I was speeding down the road talking on the phone to my lovely friend, Jolanta. She was making me feel as if I was perhaps one of the most wonderful human beings she has ever met. I was reminded how once in awhile, every so often, THAT is the essence of  having a good friend; someone to encourage you and remind you that you are valuable and GREAT. Let’s face it, it’s much harder for us to do that for ourselves….well, MOST of us anyway. Especially when we don’t get affirmed at work, or worse, maybe we dislike our work, or are constantly criticized at work. When walking around the grocery store, school, bank, library, yoga studio, etc, most people are not awakened to the fact that they are even interacting with another human being, let alone taking the time to connect with them body, mind, and soul and see all the positive, awesome things about them. And far too often, even when people do see something positive and alive in another, they fail to point it out for lack of time or their own feelings of insignificance, or the enthusiasm is looked upon as “weird”. And lastly, most people are walking around worrying about themselves and all the great, or not so great, aspects of their own character, looks, personality, and accomplishments. Pardon the average-human-nature-bashing digression, now where was I…? Ah yes, I’m talking on my phone getting pumped up with compliments, probably while sipping some caffeine infused beverage to pump me up, while driving (not a smart thing to do with my smashing record, “smashing” being the literal word to describe it) and the wise and all-knowing super human, Jolanta tells me how she now works on her clients out of her home. This is a huge step for her as she used to not even let anyone (not even me) come see her house. She was utterly embarrassed of it’s unoccupied and unlive-ableness due to her not being settled in her new life at all. First off, let me explain our conversation as well as give you a little dish on her. I called her because I was having a nervous breakdown

meltdown (again) about not being where I want to be. We were discussing my sheer and utter lackluster and I would say borderline depression feelings of having to go into work and just the very very dead end, dark tunnel I seem to see ahead when I look at so many job prospects, and try on all of these masks and costumes about who I am (internally trying them on of course). When I think of all the ones I’ve applied to and yet the fact that I’ve gotten zero “bites”. I am trying to practice gratitude, thankfulness that I am one of the lucky people in this country that even have work…. but sometimes desire and discontent take over all the positive voices in my brain and shout their nasty words at me. Then I go bonkers and think I have to throw everything overboard and run away. I clean out my cabinets and scrub my kitchen floors, I decide my diet must consist of millet and carrots, and I sell my car and possessions on Ebay. Fortunately this time, I just called Jolanta to talk some of it out rather than get on the next plane to India to live in a monastery and eat kitcheree and basmati until I’m blue in the face from holding my breath and meditating. 

Ham Mock

When I first met Jolanta she was just turning 63, she was bright, beautiful and a scared, I would venture to say “paralyzed” woman recently married, and transferred from her home and dependable life, in New Jersey. Originally uprooted from Poland, she met her now husband, Alex when she was very young and they stayed in contact throughout the years. He managed to woo her and get a ring on her finger and move her and all she knew and loved to Charlotte, NC. I met her because she was a patient in the office I worked and I begged her to chop my hair. That haircut ended up being a three hour new friend orientation event. When I first met Jolanta she was terrified to be left alone, and she often seemed to wish she didn’t exist or have to face life. Now, years later (three, I think) she is absolutely flourishing. She has friends, she is strong to stand up for herself, she gets around Charlotte with her car and GPS better than a UPS delivery driver,  she is active, she does yoga, she eats healthier, her house is organized and she has someone helping her clean it. But most of all, she has opened up her hair dressing studio in her house (she is a MASTER stylist and the best hairdresser this side of well, everywhere). As she has organized her life, and really become at peace with herself, her house has gotten cleaner, more organized, more inviting and as she says now rather than being embarrassed and ashamed of it, “It just is.” It’s sort of a reflection of the transformation she has made in her own life.

Bedroom!

I recently made a list of all my living situations (I had to start the list for a work-related purpose and then I just did one for my own benefit). Interesting how the places I’ve lived have reflected much of my own personal standing at that time. Your home is often a reflection of your state. Currently, my apartment is a temporary home, a place of transition. One in which “good enough” is good enough. I use paper bags instead of a trash can, I am not completely established. I don’t buy necessities when I need them, I just let things run out completely for weeks on end (including groceries). I like it to be the bare minimum, yet still comfortable and I am very thankful for it everyday, even though slightly dissatisfied with it’s state. I always feel that it needs a deep. healthy cleaning but I feel rather too tired to manage such a feat. Furthermore, I am always looking for excuses to be outside of my house, unless I have someone over for company, in which I really enjoy sharing my time and space with them. I want them to feel comfortable in it, but when it’s just me, it’s as good messy for days as it is clean and tidy. When I took the time today to analyze this, I realized how true my theory was! At least, theoretically…in my mind anyway. Oh yes, this is very good. With theories like these, I will be creating my own religion in no time! What is your home like? Is it an abandoned case? A place you are able to frequent  and feel really cozy and at peace in? Are you working hard on your home for a strong belief in something? Is your home always on the go? Is it comfortable and inviting to others? Are you working with what you got? Do you live out of the trunk of you car? If this is not your final stomping grounds, what do you have in the works? What is changing and….

What will your home look like in the future?

HillHouse

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