Wednesday, March 25, 2009


STM and I have been making the three-hour drive over the mountain to this house since before the kids were born. My mom bought this house about 20 years ago. About six years ago she moved over to Portland to be nearer to us, but kept the house in SIsters - all paid off and a great escape, it was too hard to part with.

Now we never can.

This house has been dubbed the Healing House and I always feel instantly better the minute my car crunches over the gravel, and I open the driver's side door and get that first hit of juniper and pine.

When I open the door and see so many things just as she left them, I'm welcomed and reassured. In Rojo's room there is still a bookshelf full of children's books. Some of the same artwork, furniture, pots and pans, all bring a sense of "home." STM's parents still live in the same house they have lived in his entire life. He can go "home" anytime, and often does. A 10-minute drive and he's surrounded by his childhood memories, the familiar surroundings, the comforts.

But I have this house, and it's the same thing for my kids - they feel like they're coming home when they come here.

Rojo has a checklist of all the things he has to do when we're here, never mind that he's now almost 13, and not 3. We have to play with the same toy trucks, read the same books, get excited for the garbage truck on Monday mornings, go play at the park, pick up papers from the homes for sale, find public drinking fountains and eat French fries at the local hamburger joint. With 15 packets of ketchup. Exactly 15.

We have to swing him in the hammock and let him "ha" on us (breathe his garlicky breath all over us, forcing us to gag).

We have to let him drink water from the same cup that's been here for years - the one with the red plastic lid - and let him insert the Crazy Straw.

We're leaving today. He wanted to come for four nights. It's been four nights. He's done.

Not with being a little boy.

Not with being a slave to tradition.

Just done with this particular stroll down memory lane.

We'll be back.


And we'll do it all again.



Anonymous said...

Great post - everyone needs a place like that!

Deb Shucka said...

I love the home you're getting to experience at the beginning of spring, and at the beginning of this new road. Your words are like fresh, clear spring water.

Michelle O'Neil said...

Four nights. He's nothing if not a guy with a plan.

: )

Anonymous said...

it sounds like delight. i love that you've called it the healing house.

where do i get one of those?

Tanya @ Teenautism said...

That sounds like such a lovely get-away. Glad for you!

Jerri said...

Love that you let him "HA" on you.

Wanda said...

Sounds wonderful. I would like to go over the mountains and through the woods to grandmother's house, too.

kario said...

Thank you so much for sharing this magical place with me. I love knowing that you have these rituals in place for the healing house.

And I'm sensing the funk has been flushed for now. Yippee!

Alicia (aka Dr. Mom) said...

Man, is that picture the VIEW from the healing house? If so, that's incredible.

Amber said...

How wonderful to have that feeling in a place.
I am happy you have such a place to share.