Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Take Us Back In Time Tuesday - 8/4/09


This is the house I grew up in. It is a duplex, one of the few, in a town consisting of mostly the rich and privileged. We lived on the side with the yellow Chevette in the driveway.

When I was searching through my photos for this weeks post, I couldn't decide which smiling face or happy memory to write about.

I flipped a page in my album and wondered what I was searching for. Suddenly, this photo jumped out at me. But not in a good way. It caused a knot in my chest. I felt somewhat short of breath. It was an unexpected reaction but so strong that I kept looking.

It was as though the photo was calling out to me. It was an eerie feeling. It felt dark.

Most of you might look at this house and say, "Oh, how nice, Mrs. Schmitty's childhood home." Please do not call it a home. It was not.

What I see in my mind, when I look at this house, is a childhood of sadness, of violence, of abuse. I see a mother and three children who walked on eggshells around an unpredictable man.

I look at those shaded windows on the second floor and my throat tightens. That's how we lived. Closed up from the outside so our pain was never seen by the world. No one ever came in. And when we wandered out, those shades were drawn in our souls. For me, it took a long time for anyone to be let in there.

As I look around me now, I am just realizing; the first thing I do every morning is to pull up the shades, tie back the curtains, and open the front door. I let the sun and the outside spill in to brighten my home.

Because yes, this is my home.

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8 comments:

Jill said...

What a powerful post! Gave me chills! Thanks for sharing. If I can find a minute, I'll do one today too!!

Julia said...

wow, we just never know what is behind the doors of a house. I hope I am seeing the people that might need help. I'm so glad you've made such a wonderful home for you and your family now.

Jen said...

I'm giving you a great big virtual hug right now. You amaze me. I'm so sorry for what happened to you but so proud of you for breaking the cycle with you own children.

Lisa @ Boondock Ramblings said...

That had to be . . . I don't even know. My father lost his temper from time-to-time but he was/is a wonderful man. My mom's dad. . . he sounds like your father. Mom says they never knew when he was going to blow and for what reason.

It's interesting how photos bring back so many memories.

I forgot to do it again this week. I'll try to plan better next week and get involved!

Baloney said...

A good reminder to let the sunshine in and be thankful. Also a good reminder that we never really know what someone's life is really like.
I'm sad for your memories but happy for your life as it is now.

Momo Fali said...

I am so sorry for what you went through. It's great to hear that you let the sun shine in now, though!

Patois said...

Damn. I'm so sorry. Good for you, though, that you can claim it and it doesn't claim you now.

Meredith said...

I'm having so much fun with this!