Have you ever seen a face and it changed a place for you?
As a high schooler I remember being driven to a friend’s house. I had never been there before. When we pulled in the driveway and I got a full look at the house it seemed so large and intimidating. It was kind of isolated. All by its self. It was beautiful, manorly like, all brick. Old. But well cared for. But it seemed unwelcoming. It felt….. well, cold. I looked at my “driver” as if to say don’t leave me here! But when I turned back to the house my friend had come running out and was on the sidewalk coming from the back of the house. She was so very happy to see me! Suddenly the entire house had a new atmosphere about it.
When I was a first time expectant mom my house was still a weird environment for me. Just me and one other person. From a house of ten to a house of two was a huge adjustment. And even four years later it was still bizarre feeling. So quiet. Then I brought home the baby. Her little face made it a home. I had been trying to create something all along by putting the couch in the right place, dinner on the table, keeping things neat and tidy. But it wasn’t until her little face arrived there that it turned in to a home.
When we first traveled to Ireland it was to see what use to be. It is where family had come from. It was where wonderful things had happened. Terrible things had happened. There was a connection to the past. It was something I felt I should know, it was something I did feel. I was connected to that past by our history and papers. Then we met family. Faces that conjure up the reality of what Ireland is to our family and it’s history. Faces that make it feel like we belong. Because we belong to them. A smiling face waiting for you always seems to put a different feeling in the air.
When I leave work at night and I am physically or mentally drained, or for that matter totally energized and spirited, it never fails to happen. That moment when I see my husband in the car, looking at me, watching for me. Seeing someone who is not only waiting, but ancitipating, seeing you. Being with you. Seeing that face through the window is a moment of joy every day.
Every place that is important to me, is made so by the face that looks back at me from there. And they have all changed my life.