Thursday, 7 August 2008

Home Matters Most

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Jennifer at HomeMattersMost has asked her fellow bloggers to write a post about why their home matters most to them and there's a lovely book that the generous lady's giving away to whoever's entry is 'pulled from a hat' at the end of it all. This is my contribution.


From The Garden
looks kind of pretty but it's actually more like a jungle than a garden



I’ve always been a bit of a wanderer and since leaving home at the tender age of 18, I’ve lived in 18 different properties. Mum insists it’s the gypsy blood in me coming out (My great-grandmother was a Romany Gypsy) and really never thought I’d settle down, but to everybody’s surprise, I’ve now lived in this house for almost 8 years.

When I was younger, home didn’t really exist as such. A property was just a place where we could be out of the elements, rest our heads and prepare for the next adventure. Even when we eventually built our own house I still didn’t feel any real attachment to it - it hurt more to sell the caravan, which satisfied my wanderlust, than it did to sell the house. But things change.

Becoming ill put a stop to my spontaneous lifestyle and I had to settle, like it or not. I wasn’t too happy with that to start with, especially as I live in what I considered to be a very poky little house - I was used to the big Norwegian homes and a tiny 3-bed roomed terrace in the UK felt like living in a chicken coop in comparison. I felt cramped and smothered, almost as if I couldn’t breath through lack of space both inside the house and in the tiny garden.

You get used to things though, and gradually I started to see this place differently - if I was going to be here for a long time, best make it into a proper home. I’ve gradually been transforming it into a place where I can feel happy and contented, safe from the world and where stress doesn’t exist. Peace and quiet are important to me - the days of having friends over to party at the weekends or trails of kids running through the place are long gone.

Even though I don’t own the house (it’s housing association so secured long-term tenancy) I'm not afraid of putting money or work into it. I’m saving for a new kitchen, I want to install a shower and improve the bathroom, the rest will be redecorated to a much higher standard than is the case today and the garden will be given a complete make-over. I suppose you could say that I’ve finally come to rest, found my base, the place where I can return to knowing that I’ll find the peace I need.

I like to have friends over and there’s always a bed for the night if they need it but unsavoury types aren’t welcome here and neither are those who disrespect my home; I expect everybody to chip in and keep the equilibrium of peace and harmony going. Unfortunately, not everyone understands that. I like the sound of laughter and conversation in the house, but I also enjoy being alone, finding pleasure in quiet solitude while I sit and read, write, knit, sew or just ponder life.

To me, home matters most because it’s where I spend the bulk of my time, and gives me what I need most from life. Contentment.

Sharon J

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10 comments:

Jennifer said...

That's really great! Thanks for taking the time to think about this one. :D

jen

Gavin said...

Very heart felt Sharon.

As they say "Home is where the heart is". My home is my castle, and I love it to bits, warts and all. Kim and I were just saying today that we would not trade it in for all the money in the world, and that is the truth. We feel at peace and secure in our own little part of the planet where we are trying to make a difference.

Sharon J said...

You're welcome, Jennifer :)

Gavin. I hear you and it's the fact that I can be myself, come what may, when I'm at home that leads to that wonderful feeling of contentment. When people (visitors) upset that by expecting me to be something I'm not, I'm not happy. This is the place where I can do my bit for the planet, slob around in my oldest clothes, dance, sing, dream and just be :)

I'm done wandering.

Jade of the Jungle said...

So true. For me home (whether it's here in London, or my parents' house which will always be home too) is where you can just be yourself, no questions asked. Which, when you ocasionally bop around like a lunatic to something playing on the radio whilst singing into a hairbrush, is no bad thing :)

J

Lu said...

Very nice and thoughtful post.

By the time I was 13 I had lived in 17 different homes/apartments and that wanderlust lasted for awhile. Now that I have a family, home is my sanctuary, the place I am happiest. It reflects everything I love about myself and my family (and I suppose a few of our bad habits as well!).

As far as that wanderlust goes, home is also the place from which I can launch my travels but always know that I have something I love to come back to...

apieceofwood said...

Lovely post Sharon - I too have wandered a bit and whilst this stil isn't our forever house, it's our home right now and we'll still put lots of love and care into it so we get the best out of it.

Richard said...

Done wandering but not done wondering, eh?

Frugal Trenches said...

What a truly wonderful post Sharon! Your calmness and simplicity shone through!

Sharon J said...

Jade. It's a while since I used a hairbrush as a microphone but that doesn't stop me bellowing out my favourite songs at the top of my voice.

Lu. Good point about home reflecting our bad habits too.

Apieceofwood. It’s nice to hear that somebody who isn’t in their forever home (do we ever really know that anything’s going to be forever?) can still appreciate what they have now instead of just looking ahead to the next step.

Richard. The day I stop wondering will be the day they cart me out of here in a box.

FrugalTrenches. If only I could always be as calm. I hate it when people upset me at home because the negative energy tends to hang around, bringing me down. Still, right now I feel contented and don't really want for very much at all.

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