Friday, December 09, 2005

Never to Return

Before we renovated and added on to the house in which we now live, we owned a house up the same street. This house was a very charming little Arts & Crafts bungalow, with 2 bedrooms and 1 bath. We really loved the place, but it sat up on a little hill (our neighborhood is terraced), about 10 feet off the sidewalk grade. So it was nearly impossible to ramp. We bought it when I was pregnant with Robert, and Robert developed normally until he was about 13 months old. We were very happy there--in fact, we lived there during some of the happiest times of my life--and the saddest.

Once it was clear that Robert's disabilities were long term, we realized that we could not stay there. A house down the block, on a lot that sat nearly at grade level with the sidewalk, became available, and we renovated it and added on. We sold our old house to a younger couple, who lived in it for about two years, after which they decided they wanted to live in another neighborhood and sold it to a developer/builder.

It was torn down yesterday. I knew that that was coming--in fact have known it since last spring. And I had the opportunity to go back into it and look around one last time. Although I know that the house has not been mine for some time, I was still incredibly saddened to see it go. And I am completely happy in our new house--it better meets our needs and has a beautiful design that other people constantly remark upon.

I tried to figure out why. I finally decided that the house must have represented to me a kind of normalcy: this is where we lived when we thought that life would be normal, that we could expect trials and tribulations, but not a complete descent into hell. And now whatever remains of normal has been absolutely, finally demolished, never to return again.

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