(Note to the reader: Again, one of those things I wrote and never published. This was just a way for me to turn an annoying situation into a humorous one and make light of a difficult time, leaving a city and home that was comfortable and familiar for a city and home that was very uncomfortable and unfamiliar. More happened during this time than I could even write about, but here’s a tiny snapshot. I’ll be writing about the new home and one year in Texas next!)
Dear rental home,
This is an ode to you and what I will not miss. I hope you enjoy.
I will not miss your 1100 sq. feet or the layers of dirt along your floors. Although, on the bright side, the fossil count is now up to 2,882, and we’re looking forward to starting the museum soon.
Nor will I miss the questionable stain atop the ceiling in my room, the one that the family takes a vote on every night as to whether it’s just splashed coke, or the leftover evidence of a crime.
I will not miss the trek outside to do my laundry with a basket of clothes in one hand and a machete in the other in case another creature decides it would like to see how high Lizzie can jump.
I will not miss your tiny shower so narrow that the shower curtain sticks to my legs, nor the hours I’ve spent laying awake at night on an airbed, wondering how I could have gotten so low. (Literally.)
I will not miss that moment right as I close my eyes to go to sleep, and the train charges by so loudly it rattles the windows and I lie awake with bloodshot eyes convinced the stain is definitely evidence of a crime for someone having to live in this house.
And I definitely will not miss the cockroaches who scuttle out from under the kitchen sink. I’ve gotten so used to them owning the place, it would not surprise me at all to find one in a tux one day, kicked back in the kitchen and smoking a little cigar.
Or an overachieving fire alarm that works so well, a bag of barbeque chips can set it off.
Propping closed the dishwasher with a chair.
Or walking through the yard, feeling my shoes get wet, wondering when it rained, and even more, why the scent in my nose smells so much like a PortaPotty.
No, dear rental home, I can’t say I’ll miss you much at all.
I am thankful to you.
For putting a roof over my head.
For keeping me dry from the storms, for not floating away during the floods.
For giving me a place to sleep, and a place to eat.
A place to make memories with my family, comical though they may be.
Like having to pull up a stool and a computer chair for Thanksgiving dinner, or the time Dad caught a lizard for “Mackenzie” and the talk to tell Dad that, “it’s time to let Geico go.”
Or the days and the moments we spend dreaming about the house to come and missing the home we left, united in our memories and in our hopes for the future.
Rental home, you have caused us to dream. You’ve kept us safe. Given us things to laugh about and overcome, on a daily basis. You’ve challenged our bonds as a family, pushed our patience with one another to the limit.
…Like, seriously, the limit.
We’re still here.
In some ways, I guess you’re not lookin’ so bad after all.
…You’ll look even better in the rearview mirror as we drive away never to return again, but you know.
Thanks for making us better, more patient people.
For challenging us and pushing us to dream.
You are the tiniest, biggest pain-in-the-butt house I’ve ever had to deal with.
All-in-all, rental home, I guess what I’m trying to say is this:
You make a Motel 6 look good.