This is an emotional time of year for me. Although it has been 6 years since the loss of our home in a wildfire, this time of year conjures up surprising emotions that I think I should have gotten over a long time ago. After all, Charlie, Coco and I are all right. None of our family was injured in the fire. And, we have a beautiful new home to replace our 99-year-old farmhouse.
And, still, I weep.
Our lives’ timeline has been frozen in two moments: our life before the fire and our life after the fire. I know this seems strange, but even now, sometimes I’ll start sentences with “before the fire…” thinking that it explains something relevant whether it does or not. And, sometimes I’ll look for something in our home and then remember we no longer have it; we had it before the fire.
I look across our field, still barren after six years, to the place where our old house once stood. Living on 8 acres, we did not rebuild our home in the exact location, but rather chose to build our new house on the western tip of our property, leaving the old driveway intact as a memorial to a family home that housed multiple generations throughout its 99 year history. A tribute to a gentler time, a slower pace.
One Year Ago Today – Any Way the Wind Blows (click to read the post) was the prologue to the 19-part series I wrote about the loss of our home in this fire, what we did after and the building of our new home.
It’s a story of love, acts of kindness, compassion, hope and gratitude. If you didn’t read it last year, I hope you’ll follow along this year.