Thursday, September 30, 2010
The Home Place
The house that built me was not the house that I shared with my parents. The house that built me belonged to my Granddaddy & my Nanny. Those of you who are Southern & Country understand the term "the homeplace." It's the place where your roots are buried deep. It's the place where you felt like you were truly home. Safety, security, love, warmth - the homeplace.
Mine is a small farmhouse on a dairy farm. 200 acres of barns, fields, Jersey cows, dirt, pastures, ponds, woods - they all make up the homeplace. Anytime I was back in Oklahoma I would drive out to the farm my family no longer owns. I would sit in the driveway & look at the house, the dairy barn & let the memories take me back. I could see it all again. The dairy up & running, cows in the fields, hear the John Deere tractor off in a hay field, see my Nanny working in the garden, & a blond haired blued-eyed girl lying in the grass watching the clouds drift by.
Sometimes I would get out of the car & walk around a bit. Took alot of pictures one day. I would always touch the ground & feel the life of that place flow through me once again. I have always & will always belong to that land. There are the happy memories of my childhood.
Yep, that house built me. The values I learned there have stayed with me for over 5 decades. I can still hear the voices of my grandparents. I can still see them even though they have been gone from this world for many years. My Granddaddy died when I was 16, my Nanny when I was in my mid-30's (on my birthday). But they are never far from my thoughts or my heart. For they, perhaps more than anyone else, helped shape the woman I am today. I was cherished in that house. I was valuable in that house. I was loved, respected, & taught so much in that house.
No matter how far we travel our raising wins out. Mine has as I get older & am once again drawn toward the house that built me. It is time to hold that soil that was farmed by my family in my hand once again, it is time to look at the fields, remember learning to milk a cow, gathering vegetables from the garden, running across fields free with a border collie by my side. Waterboy is buried on that land. He was my first dog, & he is the reason I love dogs. He was the smartest dog I ever knew. He was a joy to watch working cattle. He lived to be 20. He was in my life from my birth & I mourned his passing when I was not quite in my teens.
The Homeplace. The house that built me. To quote another country song "the roots of my raisin' run deep". I hope you, too, have a home place. A place where all that is good about you was built.