Once upon a time there was a house.
It wasn’t a big house, or a fancy house.
The family that loved it wasn’t big or fancy either.
The house watched as the family of three moved in and began to carefully make it their own.
Some paint here, a curtain there.
The family of three became a family of four.
It’s floors were stained, the walls written on, the windows smeared with miniature handprints and the house loved the family more.
The family of four became a family of five.
The hallways rang with voices, the bedrooms were steeped in giggles, the memories of a billion words echo through the air, the house sheltered its family.
The house weathered storms, yet it kept its family safe as they weathered storms of their own.
The darkest corners bore witness to secret tears, the doors shook with fiery anger, the roof covered hearts filled with fear and hope.
The house watched as the children grew, the years changing them all.
The house felt empty as the boxes filled.
A mother’s hand touched a spot where the wall had done it’s job and held a precious photo all those years.
Tiny feet made the soft “slap slap” on the tile that had led her many nights between a child’s bed and a parent’s.
Prints from youthful hands caught a father’s eye, the painted palms testifying to the lives that thrived in these rooms.
Spaces that stood bursting with toys and clothes and books and games looked strangely unfamiliar to the eyes of the children that had never seen them bare.
The family stood outside and looked at the house one last time. Babies were brought home here, first steps were taken here, celebrations and devestation happened here, wars were fought and won on this battleground, this house was a breeding ground for hopes and dreams, it was a castle and a boat and an island in the imaginations of the minds that grew there.
The family left.
The house was empty, but for the ghosts of the family it had loved so well.