Thursday, January 19, 2012

The House as Beast

Over ten years ago I sold my first house (the first one that I owned) after my divorce. At the time, I admit that I was relieved that the house was no longer my responsibility; this was after two basement floods, a swarm of field mice and a garage that almost caved in on me. The house had become a beast, a monster, Gilgamesh at his worst (when he slept with all the wives before their weddings). Not only did the house test me at every instance, it also represented the years of being married to a serial cheater, represented the two years of cancer treatment and the ultimate removal of everything that made me a woman and represented the underlying anger and violence that met me daily. No longer was this building a home where a family could grow and succeed; no, the house roared at me each time I drove up, its voice filled with rage and hatred. I wanted it out of my life as soon as possible.

Most people in suburbia dream of home ownership as it represents the pinnacle of belonging. In my eyes the house was not a dream but a nightmare; in fact, I never want to live in a house like that again. Nope, a condo where someone else worries about getting rid of vermin and fixing the roof, a co-op where an elevator takes me to my floor and snow removal is no concern, that is what my suburban dream is made of.

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