They said the house had “good bones.” In realtor speak that meant that despite the tired cosmetics and the updates that it needed, the house had an appealing structure and was basically sound. Walking through the house after we’d emptied it of all the contents, I could finally see it.
Devoid of all Mom’s furniture and belongings, my footsteps echoed as I walked across the wooden floors. Cupboards and doors creaked more loudly than usual as I peered inside to make sure nothing was left behind. Rooms looked larger than before. The character became more apparent.
It took on the look of a “new” house. Rather than feeling nostalgic about the years Mom had spent there and the good family times we shared in that space, I felt like I was seeing it through the eyes of the buyer. I understood how they could get excited about moving in. I could see the potential it held, and the opportunities they had for transforming it into their own unique space.
It made me feel good about turning the house over to someone who will give it new life. Transformations are fine with me, all the better if it renews the spirit of the house.
It’s time to move on. My daughter texted me as I was leaving the house for the last time. Pick a flower as you leave for a final memory, she said. So I did. I left the house empty, but brought a little bit of Mom home with me. One final time.