The Pettitfiles

Love, home and family.

I’ve spent nearly a month at my parents’ house. The house that we built, the space that saw me through high school and beyond, the gravel road that carried my feet from 1982 to beyond.   Maturity was a benign word to me, perhaps, till even a couple years ago. I had to find it on my own, without the safety of parents, old friends and familiar people. Through failures and patience, the love a few damn good people, I’ve come out on the other side. I’ve always prided myself on internal honesty and honing a perspective unique to me, also knowing that said ideal could be shifted askew by the thought process of an irreverent man. But I also knew that T’s needed to be crossed and I’s dotted, that’s the maturity and vocabulary I was once missing to handle it correctly.

When I was a kid, I found solace in the quite. Our life was always full of noise, what I perceived to be hectic, white noise I didn’t know anything about. Filled by People with lots to say and no ears to listen, and I, didn’t know what or how to begin to unravel the alphabet trapped between my ears or the jumbled knots in my head, heart and gut. I was reminded of subtle beauty, sounds and getting lost in space and thought. My legs stopped what they were doing, my eyes looked towards the sky and my mind slowed to everything but listening. The axis shifted and the world once again came to me slowly, in maturation it ebbed quicker, but the feeling and sense, one and the same. Wide brimmed maple leaves sway and rub together in a melodic hymn, tops of pines leaning on each other’s shoulders, sharing a view and a story with one another looking over the mountains and river. Crickets, frogs and dogs walking upon 5/8ths minus gravel where all I heard, and I of course felt love, but a nostalgia for someone who is back in our home. I realized I’ve always listened, perhaps as a way to avoid fear, the unknown is what everyone was afraid of, and sometimes of what was inside the house. I waited to hear it coming, and instead however, I was ushered into a translucent beauty full of color, sounds and imagination.

The mornings are cast in an array of dew, spider webs spread from blackberry bushes upwards to poplars carrying weaves of water slightly drooping each filament of web. Pools gathered in the depths of leaves, captions of breath held like quotations above your head, the world was held in an aquatic chill, fog and the mystic of a new day. Baby blue sky bends to white arching across the sky patiently waiting for the sun. Soon however, it will rise from behind the mountains, tall pines and slowly burn the fog off and bring it back into the cumulous, where the cycle would repeat, or eventually come down in earnest precipitation.

The artic light of late summer throws sunlight deep into the later hands on the clock, where a man can still navigate till 10 pm, but he should be close to home. It’s here I realized, that 187th was no    longer home, but a place I grew up. It’s the house we built and the structure that houses my parents, but for me, it’s an address. You’d be hard pressed to discover love as the underlying movement amongst our family, we’re fighters and workers, sometimes shameful, others gluttonous. Markedly different but we share the same stories and last name, but for me, it’s because of her I’d do anything for and our future.

Sacrifice, commitment, Love and the steady peaceful feeling internal happiness comes when you’re paired with someone that speaks on levels both seen and those we didn’t know we had, pushes you to be better and live fuller. For me, it’s the only time in my entire life I simply couldn’t get enough of somebody, or something. I wanted her near whenever possible. Worked hands become silk when brushed against porcelain skin, rugged edges become smoothed by whispers and a kiss, and madness at times fills us both, especially on her end, as my idiot endeavors have tested every boundary she’s had, and for reasons I’ll forever be grateful for, she’s here, love is indeed, the greatest feat of them all. With a look, a convoluted world makes sense when I watch her, and it wouldn’t matter if it was Chandler Arizona, or Chernobyl, I’d go right now with her.

Love, when done right is the most selfish and gratifying of any emotion and endeavor. Selfish that in the notion of purely loving someone it fills a well within, all the while filling theirs, the preverbal win/win. In adoration, I’ve become fuller. Acting true to yourself, heart and beliefs makes them love you even more as silent rhythms resonate and give new light to find further things we love about something, or, someone. In over a year and a half my introduction to this is continuing, learning new things about the emotion, fear and complete joy as a wide smile crosses my face by just a thought. It’s addicting, funny and a fact that I’ll never bore in love with her.   Missing someone is the quintessential etiquette, their sound, touch and habits.

The last time I was housed here, there wasn’t any madness to love. I remember telling my friends, “why you with her if you don’t like to be with her” I, of course was a virgin and late to the party, but it still holds true. I’ve spent the greater majority of my years alone, and it’s been alright, I’ve seen and experienced the hardships and unworthiness of others. In circles spinning smaller and larger, we all come around, whole, there is a steadiness now, a foundation and core, a pact and honor. For a couple years I lost that, tangled in deceit, falseness, lost my trust in myself and others.   Spending months fishing in Alaska to return, mildly homeless, I’ve always wanted a home, warm, soft and trusting. Filled with someone I cannot get enough and positivity, where any direction is alright, especially if we’re heading there together.

In the time and talks with my parents, sister and family, we’ve righted many wrongs and non-spoken words. Mended and coped with love and hope, but more importantly dedication and I’ve felt myself a changed man, closure and good endings, I’m looking forward to a lighter self, a self-imposed prisonment is over, and at the core I firmly see what I’ve always believed and the path and direction has never been clearer.

It is never too late to do the right thing, it’s never too late to be honest. Find remarkable people, give them yourself in honesty. Find a woman who inspires, trusts, loves, shapes and voices, images that will last longer than a lifetime, and pictures that make you see your life play out, acts of a husband, father, friend, lover and partner. That honor is something I’ll never bury again, the privilege of someone’s love and respect, it is beautiful.  I would’ve never thought that my life, especially love life would be this overwhelming, that the long images of who I wanted to truly be all them years ago has come to fruition, that hard work pays off, but most important that love is the true barometer.

It’s shown me what I’ve achieved and learned, what I have and the gratitude, respect and honor that comes with it, but more importantly what we need to work on and improve.  These are all things I’ve thought on oceans, bikes, mountains and rivers, but now they’re being played out, that the core is stronger than ever, character will always shine through and home has never looked so good.  Here’s to family future and past.  Who every would’ve thought maturity could feel so good.

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