When where you live is not your home.

“How terrible to live surrounded by the stark, sharp, hollowness of things that simply were enough.” – Patrick Rothfuss

Two and  a half years ago I moved into this apartment.  I did not choose it.

This apartment is part of a housing subsidy for the mentally ill.  I qualified because my depression had been so nonfunctional that it caused me to be homeless.

I was grateful to get it.

However, my sisters, in an utterly misguided attempt to help a homeless woman with a mental illness, had put most of my belongings into a storage locker for me so I wouldn’t lose them while I was homeless.

They effectively turned my belongings into a physical reminder that my stuff had more value to my sisters than I did.   And so as much as I longed to just never see my stuff again, I had to let my sisters get it out of storage because they were paying a monthly fee for it.

They moved my things into my new shelter.  An apartment I didn’t choose.  They unpacked a few boxes that day before they left.

I didn’t unpack anything else for 2 months after they left and then I flunked my first inspection because I didn’t unpack.  So I unpacked.  MOSTLY.

I left 3 boxes – one with all of my pictures, one with a bunch of kitchen stuff and one with I don’t know what.  I have never opened it. And clearly I don’t miss it.

Before this time, I was very particular about the space where I lived.  I always decorated and surrounded myself with things that I loved.  Things that mattered to me.

But those things that I used to surround myself with belong to a different me.  Those things, in boxes now, represent a lot of emotional turmoil for me.  They didn’t belong to me anymore.  They belong to my sisters, who paid for their continued existence.  Just like this place where I live doesn’t belong to me, it belongs to the depression.

I have enough.  I have shelter and furniture and safety.  I eat food. I have enough.

I used to have things that were a delight to me.  I used to have a home.

I want a home.  I want to be able to take delight in the world that surrounds me.  I’m thinking about how to make that happen.

I do not picture myself throwing out everything in the apartment in a great purge.  Although it sounds rather delightful.

I think I need to throw some things out and make friends again with others.  I think I need to allow myself to decorate this apartment.  To let it be a home.

2 thoughts on “When where you live is not your home.

  1. I hope you find a way to make it home. Whatever happens…it’s where you go back to every day. It has to start feeling like home-a place of solace and comfort.

    Liked by 1 person

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