Seventeen years ago, I took the train to Indiana to ring in the New Year with my boyfriend.
He said, "I want a house. If I buy a house, will you come for the summer?"
I said yes.
Over spring break I helped him move in to Rambling Farmhouse.
I can still see it as it was then with the avocado refrigerator and the goldenrod stove, the drop ceiling and the shag carpeting.
"The Brady Bunch threw up in this house," the realtor said.
We set up a Danish modern couch, leather swivel chairs, a pole lamp, and string art. And we owned it.
After that first summer we still loved each other, so the summer after that I moved all my worldly possessions to Rambling Farmhouse, and the summer after that we got married.
He carried me across the threshold. The next year, we carried Anna into this house, and the year after that, Sofia.
And then I carried him over the threshold.
Within these walls I became a wife, a mother, a professional, a widow. These walls have contained my adulthood.
Today begins my life beyond these walls.
The movers are coming to take the heavy furniture to our (temporary) new digs at Rustic Lakehouse. Over the course of the next couple of weeks, the girls and I will sort our worldly possessions. Some things we will carry over a new threshold, some things we will part with forever.
Then, I will hand over the keys to a new family, who will claim these walls as we once did.