Black Handled Key on Key Hole

New House, Fresh Start

After three months of renovations and upgrades, our house finally went on the market yesterday. Potential buyers saw a sleek, clutter-free version of the house we lived in for nearly a decade—a blank slate ready for them to create their own memories. 

Yet when I look at the pictures, my mind’s eye sees the walls splattered with food from a rambunctious baby learning how to use a spoon, the cluttered living room filled with toys, the unmade beds from a long, restless night’s sleep, the empty corner that twinkled with the lights of a Christmas tree, the barren table that held countless family dinners and discussions and the spotless kitchen that made many batches of cookies. 

It was our first abode as a family of three. Outside of my grandparent’s house, it was the only house that ever felt like home. Growing up, we moved from apartment to apartment, with an occasional townhouse sprinkled in for good measure. It wasn’t until I was 19 that my mom and stepfather finally bought a house. 

My husband and I purchased a condo while we lived in Chicago, but it was part of a larger structure where you could only do so much to make it your own. The house purchase in Austin marked a transition from young adult to full-fledged adult. Granted, at the time, I didn’t (nor do I now!) necessarily feel that way in other aspects of my life.

We now live in a new house, one that came with its own clean slate. When we moved in, the fresh coat of white paint and new white countertops and cupboards were sterile, allowing us to create our vision of what our future would look like. 

The funny thing is, it felt like an invitation to create what my future would look like in other areas too. During the past three months of living here, I have taken the opportunity to take action on my dream of writing. It’s almost as though the blankness of it all allowed me to see my potential.

I’d compare it to transferring schools. You are granted a fresh start where nobody knows you, and you can reinvent yourself however you choose. 

In this house, I’ve carved out a writing nook for myself. Have set trackable big hairy audacious goals. And have started daily habits that propel me forward a little bit each day toward making writing my full-time occupation. 

While it’s only been three months, when I look around our new house, I see where Laura, the writer, lives. I see the anthology books my stories are part of. I see the spot where I take my writing group calls. I see the nook where I write articles. 

We still have a lot on our to-do list to make this house our own, just as I am at the beginning of this journey of making writing my profession. There is an old treehouse in the back, which has been neglected over time. But the foundation is strong. We just have to figure out how to rebuild certain parts and make it our own. The foundation of writing has been in me for as long as I can remember. I have to be open to the process of building upon it, learn the areas in which I need to improve, put in the time to grow as a writer and find my unique voice. 

We’re all granted periods in our lives where we feel like a fresh start is upon us. It’s up to us to take action when those opportunities present themselves. 

As for the new family moving into our old house, I pray they find happiness and create their own beautiful memories as they move forward with their journey through life. I hope their fresh start is as bountiful as mine. 

And for anyone looking for a fresh start, it doesn’t have to be as significant as a new house to turn the page, it’s as simple as deciding to.

Similar Posts