The last time I wrote a love letter was in high school. It was to my first boyfriend and as over-the-top and sickly sweet as you'd imagine for a fifteen-year-old. It was folded up intricately until it was no bigger than a piece of gum and written in a pen with perfumed ink. Since then, the idea of writing a love letter has felt so sappy and silly that I've avoided it entirely, with the exception of our wedding vows. That is, until now. Here we are, two decades later, and I'm writing another; though this one is for our house. Writing a love letter to our house wasn't an idea I had, but an exercise my therapist suggested I do as a way to appreciate my time there, before closing the door on that chapter of our lives. But honestly, it only feels right to honor it with a letter. So here goes...
To my house,
You were the first home I ever bought, where I brought Sloan to from the hospital. And though I'm so very excited about our new place, I'm also sad to be leaving. It's similar to a relationship that ended not because you fell out of love, but because the timing wasn't right. Or perhaps, the distance created too big of a burden. I never stopped loving you and, honestly, never thought I'd leave you. But circumstances, namely Sloan starting elementary school next year, made the decision quite simple: It was time to leave.
I can't think of a better place to have called home for the past six years. From the moment G and I walked through the Open House, we instantly knew you were the one. The way the sun filtered in through the windows, the fresh air that flowed through each room, and the details that paid homage to your (century-old) age while still feeling modern. It was in the back bedroom where my late grandma met Sloan, her great grandchild, for the first time. The kitchen where I baked birthday cakes, failed banana breads, and yule logs each Christmas Eve. I'll miss the pattering of Sloan's footsteps coming into our room in the morning, the wind chimes clanging by the old tree in the yard, and conversations by the inglenook fireplace. The way our friends used to pile into the kitchen, huddled around cheese boards, drinking wine, and listening to Paul Simon. But most of all, the feeling I'd get each time I walked in the front door.
You were a cozy, happy house, and that's how I'll remember you; warm and inviting in the winter and cool and tranquil in the summer. As we said goodbye last week, I tried to take in my favorite details so I wouldn't forget them. I did it for myself and for Sloan, who will most likely only remember snippets of her first five years in that home. We kissed the door on our way out and as we drove away, between sobs, Sloan said she was "heartbroken." It broke my own heart, and even momentarily made me question our decision to leave you. But then it made me realize just how lucky we have been - to have had such an incredible place to call home, filled with so much love. I'll cherish the memories you housed forever.
With love and gratitude,