We come up the sidewalk after a fifteen hour drive. The three-step climb up to the front porch seems like a heavy one after a long day, but my heart is light. There is a sense of place here. A sense of roots. This is where I’m from.
My parents are here–they are waiting at the door to embrace us all. Their marriage is forty eight years old and there is a twinkle in their eyes and it’s all such wild grace.
My dad, over six feet of him, draws his little granddaughter up into his love and holds her. “I love you, Papa. I’m in Ohio now.” She had been counting the days for weeks.
We walk in and around. Every room holds my earliest memories. The piano where I first learned by the “John Thompson method.” The fireplace where we snuggled with the dogs on the winter evenings. The kitchen that nourished our bodies and our souls. The backyard where we played and frolicked and chased lightning bugs on the summer nights.
So many of those questions are answered now as I look into the face of my beloved after a long day’s drive. Our own journey started in this place . . . on a bus ride to school twenty seven years ago. And twenty years ago we went on a picnic and he asked me for forever and I said yes.
I never went to law school . . . I only spent four weeks in Europe . . . but my life is full and good. And I am loved.
So here I am back at the beginning of the days ordained for me. Memories and stories are hidden in every corner. And it is my birthday soon–a reminder that I am hemmed in by time, limited by these few years. But this place, this home, this family–this is where I first tasted eternity.