It was around 2am Pacific Time, 36,000 feet up and five hours since take off: after Virgin Atlantic’s crazy idea of nutrition (best described as ‘probably a veggie thing’), after watching Gangster Squad (even on a 10 inch screen: Ryan Gosling *sigh*), that I started to crave home. I would have given anything for the ability to lie down in our freshly-sheeted bed. Given my somewhat imprisoned state, I took myself on a little house tour in my mind: our weeny home on its best day, with the sun streaming in, smelling faintly of coffee and incense and sounding like Ellen Mcllwaine.
This is the longest I have ever lived anywhere in my adult life, and its the most settled I have ever felt. Its also the first time I have loved every single room in my home. Sometimes I feel overwhelmed by the amount of books we have and the lack of storage space irritates both of us. So if we could expand the kitchen and the living room and knock out some walls, add another bedroom and have room in our office for two desks, this would be my dream home. Also: extra loo and double the garden size so our Future Pooch will have loads of room. And not be in the middle of the city, paying extortionate rent
Okay, yeah we need to move!
Former monk and psychologist Thomas Moore said that every choice we make in the material world, no matter how small, reflects the condition of our inner lives. Our living space is a metaphor for whats going on inside us: small and cramped or large and spacious; smelling like onions or old books; the color of the walls, the annoying neighbours or the neighbours that live five miles away, the chair you hate but can’t seem to throw out – when you talk about your home, you are talking about your life.
Try this: in your journal (or the comments below) describe your favourite space in your home – what do you love about it and why? And then describe your least favourite spot – the space that gives you an ‘icky’ feeling: this might be The Cupboard That Must Never Be Opened, or the grotty bathroom, the lack of windows or low ceilings.
Now read back over your description and substitue your name for the spaces in your home. This will produce a metaphorical description of whats going on with you. ‘I love the size of the garden, I can grow things here’, ‘We have a ridiculously large tv and yet there is no room for me to be creative’, ‘Sometimes I feel overwhelmed by all of the kids toys’, ‘Its never as tidy as I want, and I don’t get any help with that’ – all intriguing little morsels of information!
What insight does your home give you about your inner world?