I have never been without a home. As long as I have been drawing breath, there has not been one single day when I have had to worry about where I would lay my head at night and welcome sweet slumber. I have never known the fear and pain of being homeless.
I have been blessed, and I know it.
The past two days have been rainy and cold here in the Denver area, and I have been hearing folks complaining about how miserable it is. What they mean, is how miserable it is outside. In truth, every single one of those folks can escape all that misery by simply stepping inside. Inside their warm, well-appointed homes in suburbia.
How often have you thought about the place you call home? I’ve been struck several times lately by these thoughts, and how different my current home is from the one I grew up in, and how very different that one is from the one my grandfather grew up in, or the one his father grew up in.
My home is less than 10 years old. It is not state-of-the-art, but it is more than comfortable. It is warm when I need it to be, and easily cooled when it gets too warm. Electrical power is readily available and easily accessible. It is filled with more stuff than is necessary, simply because the space is available. This home houses half as many people in three times as much space as the one I grew up in. We have three “fireplaces” that I turn on, instead of lighting.
The house I grew up in had no fireplace, and that, to me, was its only shortcoming. Although much smaller than my current home, it never felt crowded. Sharing a room was a matter of fact that could not be avoided as long as older siblings were still living there. Not sharing a bathroom . . . well, that’s overrated, anyway. The easiest way to learn efficiency and time management is to share a bathroom with five other people.
I have never seen the house my grandfather grew up in, but I was recently sent a picture of it. I am sure it had at least one fireplace to make up for the lack of a furnace. Sharing a bathroom was not a problem; there wasn’t one. The twelve of them lived a simple life in a simple home they probably built themselves. It offered a roof over their heads, and walls to keep the weather where it belonged. I never heard my grandfather complain about it.
The point of this rambling post? I’m not sure there really is one. This weather has caused me to be a little introspective. From my desk in my home office, I can see the “miserable” weather, but I am protected from feeling its effects. Those energy-efficient windows and insulated walls make me realize how lucky I am. I hope your home makes you feel the same way.