Burt Bacharach and Hal Davis in 1964 penned, “A House is not a Home” that became a signature song for Dionne Warwick. Symbolically, the words came to life last week as I toured a home that I shared with my family, but vacated over 25 years ago. As I walked through the completely gutted colonial, the rooms seemed much smaller than I remembered, but the memories were “bigger than life!” Instead of seeing walls, my mind instantaneously did a flashback to the scenes of my then life. In the living room, my eyes were drawn to the fireplace. My memory captured a tiny squirrel that ran down the chimney while my husband was away on his job. My young son transformed into a superhero to annilate the creature while protecting his frightened little sister and terrified Mother! What a man child! That was the same chimney that my little daughter (who sucked her bottle way too long) stuck her baby bottle into without remembrance as she cried all night while we searched all night for it! For inquiring minds, that incident occurred before the convenience of 24 hour stores! Walking upstairs, my eyes visualized my son’s toy chest filled with Star Wars toys … and characters that I knew by name! He must see the new Star Wars movie this December! My mind captured the moment that the baby bed collapsed. My now model trimmed daughter fell through, because she incessantly drank Similac baby formula spiked with Gerber’s Apple cereal (her favorite) as if the “milk was going out of style!” Calorie conscious she was not! The model airplane’s historic voyage that was more his Daddy’s toy than my son’s imaginatively zoomed over my head as I stepped on one of those tiny Hot Wheels that laced every room! The wire hanger basketball hoop that my son worked up a sweat because he wanted “to be just like Mike” graced the foyer as if it was still there! My daughter’s favorite doll with the little pink bottle was on the floor. “Pick up your toys,” were my favorite four words then! Ironically, I had a son who was fascinated with matches and a daughter who oppositely loved water. Thus, the spankings occurred more than once to prevent a capsizing due to flames and floods. Spare the rod and you’ll spoil the child! Let me not forget, the yard showcased a new garage! Attempting to put my black Grand Prix in our old garage, my son who was not old enough to drive drove through the back wall! That same garage stored his three wheeler that he took his joyfully grinning kid sister for an unauthorized ride to my friend’s house who lived several miles away! Frightened they were not; Livid was I! My mind ran wild with many, many memories as I realized that the old house was just a brick and mortar structure, but the walls contained life and memories; memories that will live in my heart and mind forever and a day!
Photo credit: www.cmhpf.org