Diary of a Mom on the Move: Road Trip Day 5 – There’s no place like home
We finally made it to our house in Kansas City on Wednesday! I felt like leaping from the car, clicking my heels together and chanting, “There’s no place like home, there’s no place like home!”
My family members were all sick of the road trip concept by the time we set out on driving day five of our move from New Jersey to Missouri (about 19 hours on the road total) but it helped knowing that we were nearly finished with it. A friend of mine was sweet enough to have her sister craft crocheted little cats for the girls to play with on the trip. I saved them for today, as I knew that all of the other activities would be old news by the end of the journey. The kittens were a hit and we even designed toilet paper dresses and headbands for them. Addison named hers Bella. Cora named hers … wait for it… Bella. How original.
As we cruised down the highways of Iowa and Missouri, I was struck by just how open and green the landscape was. A sharp contrast from the heavily wooded areas and densely populated neighborhoods of New Jersey. Suddenly the four-lane highway south of Des Moines felt like a lazy back road. As an Iowa native, my own home seemed foreign.
Just 15 minutes from our Missouri house, our 2-year-old announced that she needed to use the bathroom and could not possibly wait until we got home. So, gritting our teeth, we pulled off the road and let her use the restroom at a fast-food joint. My husband was ready to head back to the car when we came out but my Midwestern sensibilities were already setting back in. I insisted that we buy something before leaving since we used their facilities. Tom rolled his eyes and ordered French fries, which the children happily ate at a snail’s pace. It was the most painful and agonizing 20 minutes. All we wanted to do was GET HOME!!
So when we finally pulled onto our street, where we lived just 15 months ago, I asked if the kids remembered which house was ours. Nope. Neither of them. But then a light bulb went off for our 4-year-old. “That one,” she said with complete confidence, pointing at our house.
We pulled into the driveway, opened the garage door and took in the indescribable feeling of being home.
As we looked over the landscaping and surveyed the new houses on the street, Addison decided to open the door to the house and let her little sister in. BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP! She set off the house alarm and stood paralyzed with fear in the doorway. Cora was frozen inside the house, apparently trying to decide whether to pee her pants or flee. My husband rushed to enter the alarm code and save our ears from the piercing siren sound. Addison later admitted, “That alarm made my heart go crazy!”
Just four hours later I had the kitchen stocked (after racking up a huge grocery bill) and a hot, homemade dinner on the table (paired with a bottle of Kansas City’s Boulevard Wheat Beer for the adults, of course). Most of our belongings are on a truck somewhere between here and New Jersey but we keep a few necessities at the house all the times, just in case we need them.
As I cuddled up with my 2-year-old later, she stroked my hair and whispered, “Mommy, I love this house. I don’t ever want to leave it.” Little does she know that the life of a gypsy doesn’t allow for such settling. But at that moment, there was no reason to trouble her little mind with those things. Because for now, we’re home.
Daily Lesson: That tired, worn out saying, “Home is where the heart is” may actually be true. And right now, my heart is in Kansas City.