Monday, August 30, 2010

we were here.

so last night lasted a lot longer than i had planned.  my intention was to be at the old apartment for a couple of hours, clean like my life depended on it, fill up the car and head back home.

but it took much longer than i had thought it would, and found myself scrub-a-dub-dub'ing for about 6 hours.  it wasn't like the apartment was even in bad shape, we had left it generally clean.  it's also not like it's a huge palace with vaulted ceilings and marble floors.

being honest, i worked hard but took my time doing it.  i was glad i had listened to ben's suggestion to get a movie from the redbox before going in, but unfortunately the pickings are slim on a saturday night at the redbox and i was left with the nicholas sparks movie, "the last song."  it wasn't awful, i just struggle with nicholas sparks movies and books in general.  i feel like he tries to hard to tug on the sappy & emotional chains of women around the nation.  i like a movie that takes my emotions by surprise instead of one where i'm anticipating a cheesy line or smoldering look around every corner.

i think going in knowing that at one point i would be watching a miley cyrus montage of her running down the beach getting all teenage-smoochy-face with her movie star boyfriend, and then eventually someone was going to die...because they almost always do in a nicholas sparks' movie....made it more bearable.  {and no, not a tear was shed from me.  i know you were wondering.}

and i will probably never admit this if you ask me to my face, but i may or may not have listened to the theme song to that movie around 10 times while i cleaned.  let's just say if you had walked past my apartment door between the hours of 8:30-9:30 you would have heard a lynsey/miley belting competition.  {i'd like to say i won, but that miley has one heck of a chest voice.}

moving on.

once the movie was over, as i continued cleaning i listened to music that reminded me of our two years in that little space of our apartment.  

and that's when the emotions took me by surprise {without the help of nicholas}, sneaking up from behind but not touching me, like a shadow.  
our first few nights in that apartment were my very definition of peaceful.  we had just finished a year of chaos in north carolina, and then had been living out of suitcases and invading others' homes for 2 months while they so generously shared their space with us.  

we had nothing, except our suitcases.  no furniture, no TV, no internet.  we went to the nearby target, bought some temporary dishes, some markers and one of those ginormous coloring books for caleb.  when we got home we colored, ate dinner and slept on the floor as a family of 3 (and 1/2).

it was a fantastic night.

i was so grateful to once again be us.  things were easy, and quiet and happy.

as i scrubbed the walls i found leah's favorite spot in the apartment.  it was to the side of our couch, right where she could stand to see outside one of the windows.  i washed her fingerprints off of the space that she would grip the wall as she would yell, "TWEET TWEET" at the birds whenever one would fly by.

i thought about the day we brought her home to this apartment.  i had this beautiful little girl who had turned our world upside down in a good way all within 24 hours. 

i scrubbed off fingerprints and vacuumed away footprints, took down curtains and pulled nails out of the walls where pictures had been hung.  i picked up what was left of the time we spent in this apartment.  and when i had finished i found myself emotional.  

the space was now empty, the walls clean and picture-less.  like a once colorful canvas now re-painted white, waiting for the next group to fill it with their colors.

and there was nothing left

of us.

i found myself wanting to carve our names into the walls of our walk-in closet, to leave something tangible behind.  

like the final scene in one of my all-time favorite series "felicity" {which by the way, i am going to invest in all 4 seasons one of these days.} when she carves "felicity was here" and tears stream down your cheeks as you remember the first day she stepped out of the taxi in NYC and you feel like you've watched her grow up and you've grown up right along with her.

i didn't carve our names though, out of fear of not getting the full return on our deposit.  i may be sentimental but i'm not an idiot.

i realized that even though we can never re-create those memories and there is something sad about saying good-bye to a part of life, we were really happy here.

we potty-trained caleb here, became a family of 4 here, got through ben's hardest years of school here, made friends here.  we were part of an online reality show here, enjoyed visitors, celebrated birthdays and holidays, hair growth and marble towers.  overcame emotional and physical struggles.  played, cried, imagined, hugged, calmed, kissed, apologized, smiled, forgave, laughed, and loved.


i packed up the rest of the car, turned out all of the lights, took one last look at what we had called home for two years, and closed the door for the last time.

i turned on some sad music and felt my eyes fill up with tears,  but as i drove out about 10 cars up from our parking space, i saw it.

something tangible.

it was small, and insignificant to others, but it was there.

a jar of smucker's strawberry jam had apparently rolled down the parking lot after my struggles with the trash bags earlier that night.  i know i should have stopped to pick it up, but instead i left it there.  and it wasn't the same thing as carving our names into walls, but it was something.  a mark we left behind.

i smiled as i drove away from the little apartment on thunderbird road, looking at the jam through my rearview mirror.

we were here.


Rachel H. said...

I felt so much the same way you did when we moved out of our last place--a place that was too small and a bad layout and just not right for us--that I had complained about and been frustrated with.

Unfortunately, however, we DID leave a mark that said we were there--in the form of a small candle stain on the carpet--and it cost us $700 buckaroos to replace. I like the idea of a jar of jam instead. :)

So excited for you guys and the wonderful new memories you will make in your new place!

Rachel Chick said...

Ah Lyns. I love you so. and I almost start crying when you get all sentimental. especially when I'm already feeling sentimental. Darn you. I can entirely relate with your feelings.

Also I don't like Nick Sparks either. The goo goo girly sappiness of it all is just not something that I like participating in.

Another also. We won't be in Utah. Sad, huh? I really want to see you. We're thinking of taking a trip mid-October. I'm toying of the idea of coming your direction. {if} we're not moving and {if} we don't have enough dough for Sea World, I {think} we might come see you! How's that for encouraging? :) LOL! I love you.

I'm excited to see pics of your new place!

S and RA Beazer said...

You really know how to touch a person's heartstrings. We love you folks.

Cuddlydoll said...

That was really sweet, Lyns. I always feel the same way when we move out of a place.

And now you have a whole new place to make your own and leave your mark.

Don't judge Nicholas Sparks too harshly. The first book of his I ever read was Three Weeks With My Brother which is a memoir about him growing up and it is a really good book. I read one of his fiction (Message in a bottle) and saw two movies based on his books and I"m done with his fiction.

lynsey said...


i've heard a lot about his memoir & have been wanting to read it! glad to hear someone i know who doesn't necessarily love the fiction he produces liked it. i'm going to brave up & give it a try.

Bryn said...

I heart you!!! Thats all! xoxo, Bryn

Fawn Becker said...

I love the song from that movie! Sooo cheesy but somehow sooo sweet. I have never seent the movie, Fran would not be able to stomach it:)