There are cookies baking in our oven one last time, and their smell provides lures me to pause from the packing. I need one more night to write at my little corner desk, in my little white kitchen, in my first little home.
I never imagined we’d leave so soon.
Three years in a home is actually quite short in the grand scheme of things, but oh how we’ve loved in this house, and oh how we’ve lived in this kitchen.
The first time we saw our house I was newly pregnant, but didn’t know it yet. Just days after placing our offer, when kitchen remodeling plans were entering the conversation, I saw two faint pink lines pop-up on a home pregnancy test. By the time our baby bump emerged the kitchen had been torn down to nothing and I asked Shane to build me a corner desk near the windows because I was going to be a mom, and I was going to quit my job, and I was going to write.
This kitchen has seen my hope.
Shane built us a beautiful kitchen and just days after it was completed we hosted a small gender reveal party. On our new granite countertops we cut open a pink cake and I pumped my fist because a little girl was going to join our family.
This kitchen has seen my joy.
A few months after Anna arrived, I’d stand alone in our kitchen as Jonathan spilled out the words “Cancer.” I rocked back and forth, sobbing, as he promised to be home soon. And then I stood, frozen, staring out the windows before screaming to God: “I don’t want to be a widow!”
This kitchen has seen my fear.
It’s in this kitchen I gave him Neupogen shots each morning before work so his white blood cells would grow, and then we’d hoist Anna into our arms and spin her round and round while Justin Bieber crooned on my laptop.
This kitchen has seen our fight.
It’s in this kitchen I wrote articles for Her.meneutics and penned much of my book proposal and interviewed literary agents.
This kitchen has seen my determination.
It’s in this kitchen that Jonathan and I made approximately 200 breakfast smoothies, loads of pancakes, our first Thanksgiving turkey, several Easter buffets, a pan of enchiladas that somehow ended up on the walls, and countless batches of granola.
This kitchen has seen our appetite.
It’s in this kitchen he called to tell me the PET scan was clear, again, and we rejoiced in his health.
This kitchen has seen my relief.
It’s in this kitchen where I made Anna’s first baby foods as she opened drawers and made messes. It’s also here that I once yelled at her for leaving Legos in my path, then dropped to my knees and begged forgiveness when I saw how much I’d crushed her spirit.
This kitchen has seen my anger.
It’s in this kitchen that my sister called to tell me Grandma Jeanne had passed, and it was here, just a days ago that I learned Grandpa Frank will not be far behind.
This kitchen has seen my sadness.
Just a few weeks ago I stood in this kitchen as Jonathan called from work and said, “There’s no longer a job for me in Sacramento. We have some choices to make.”
And again, this kitchen saw my tears.
Tonight I write in a sacred space and a holy place…
…it’s not an historical site or a church or a room with a view…
it’s my kitchen.
And it’s forever part of our story.