“Home is where your heart is.”
For the first time in a long time, I feel at peace, so relaxed.
I know I am relaxed because the boys haven’t argued, shouted, fought… they are playing like real little brothers, exploring Mum’s garden, hiding in bushes, being so, so polite (Tom especially), loving and kind, full of life…
I know I am relaxed because I am able to drink a second glass of wine without feeling ill.
I know I am relaxed as I sit in the conservatory, look out over Mumbo’s beautiful garden that has been tended to so carefully by Dad and Edna, and across the fields to the Chiltern valley beyond… and I feel no guilt, no pressure to do anything else, except watch the boys, ponder the cloud formations and sip my wine, write these words.
“Home is where your heart is”…
And yet as I ponder that, I feel it isn’t quite right. Our Home is in Yorkshire, our future is in Yorkshire.
So maybe I need to adapt it slightly – ‘Home is where your heart needs to be”… and it is my childhood home, that has drawn me to it, to mend my heart, return peace and tranquillity to my soul.
I follow the same ritual as I have done for over 35 years, the same one I did every exeat, every half term, every end of term, every return home… Walk round the rooms, looking at the paintings, pictures and ornaments… and wander round the garden, breathing in the roses, checking that everything is as it should be. This time, filling the void that has been left, with the memories of my Mumbo, our time together as the ‘Brooks’ family, in our home, playing in the garden, sharing tales of our lives and adventures, happy times and sad, around the table.
This time, each moment I savour is precious. There will only be a few more trips home. The house and garden too taxing now for my Dad alone… a new young family deserves this space to explore, tend and love.
And my Dad has the world to explore, a new love to tend to.
And I have my life to love, my family to tend to, and endless ‘Sandwich’ possibilities to explore.