“The temptation towards resolution, towards wrapping up the package, seems to me a terrible trap. Why not be more honest with the moment? The most authentic endings are the ones which are already revolving towards another beginning.” ~ Sam Shepard
I am selling my house in Austin. The closing is on Monday. Part of me wants to fly there to spend one last weekend in the cute little cottage I used to call home. Though I only lived there for three years, they were full of activity, evolution and growth. I lived there from age 26 to 29. I’ve rented it out ever since moving to Guatemala in the summer of ’09. I have many memories from the Dittmar years (that’s the name of the street it’s on, just off South First and six miles south of downtown). I shared the house with two awesome roommates with whom I’m still friends: first Edward for six months, then for almost three years, Leanne. We did a lot of yoga and meditation in the house and people would often comment on feeling a peaceful energy when they would come in. I was a new teacher at the time, and worked at a bilingual public elementary school two miles away. I had one serious boyfriend, briefly, during that period, but mostly I was single and dating or pseudo-dating a bunch of forgettable men. I threw lots of parties. Small dinner parties as well as larger shindigs with kegs of beer in the big backyard.
I remember moving in with the help of my dad and my friend Tommy. I remember the sweltering summer days mowing the yard. I remember my nutty old Vietnam vet neighbor, Terry, who I’d often talk to, him yellin’ at me from his front porch. When he found out Leanne and I were vegetarian, he hollered in disbelief, “Ya don’t eat meat? Whaddy’all eat then?! Rice?” I remember my chihuahua Lucy and my calico cat Desi.
I remember the imperfectly perfect hardwood floors and the way the sunlight shone into the house in the mornings.
I enjoyed living there immensely but decided to give living abroad a go just for the fun of it. I realized shortly after moving that I preferred the lifestyle in Central America over the kind of life I’d been living in Austin. I’ve stayed almost six years and this year became a resident and am soon buying land and a small house. I met my husband and had our daughter here. The lake where I currently live is a truly amazing and beautiful place and I can’t really imagine living anywhere else, though I still want to travel and explore other places in the world, as well as visit our families in the US and Colombia.
However, I am feeling awfully nostalgic and a little bit guilty about selling the house. I am remembering the good and bad times I had there. Stories and people come to mind, some I relish and others I would rather forget. I feel like it cuts my ties to Austin somewhat, even though my parents and siblings still live there. I am glad to be selling it, don’t get me wrong. I am grateful to my realtor and my dad who are basically handling everything for me and to the buyer, who happens to be a single woman in her twenties. I am grateful to all the good tenants I had who always paid their rent. I am grateful to have lived there, to have been a “homeowner,” and I am especially grateful to be earning enough money from the sale to buy here and even have a little left over.
With this ending comes a new beginning and the opportunity to plant roots here and create a new space as a home for our little familia. So it is with mixed emotions and much love that I bid Goodbye to my cute little old South Austin cottage!