To the person who bought my house

Hello. I know we don't know each other very well, or really at all. But we now share a very special bond, you and I.

You see, you just bought my house. You sleep where I used to sleep.

Okay, I realize that sounds creepy. But even if it is, it's true. 

I guess I just wanted to say a few things about that home of ours, if I may. 

It's a good house. I promise it is. There are some things about it that aren't perfect, for sure. The "doggy door" was there when we moved in, although we're responsible for the classy addition of the duct tape over the small hole in it. Believe me when I say that I wanted that door gone from the beginning. Somehow I could never quite talk my husband into taking it out. Maybe you'll have more success with yours. Unless you have a dog, in which case, you're welcome.

I know there were some design/decorating mistakes I made along the way. When we moved in (almost seven years ago), I was very, super concerned with doing everything as cheaply as possible. Hence the lights in the hallway (they're ugly, it's okay), the paint mistakes we never quite got around to fixing, and that one door that is a little bit harder to close because we replaced those ourselves (when you're closing it, just pull it in a little bit, towards the hinges.). I hope you've been able to work around everything and get it to work for you.

Oh, and same with the paint. I know the dark navy wall in the family room was a bold choice. I'm sure you've painted over it by now, and I just want you to know that it's okay. It's totally okay.

Not that it matters what I say... because, well, obviously it's okay. It's your house, right? Right. 

Which brings me to this part (deep breath). It is your house now, but it's been my home for the past seven years. We've gotten to know each other pretty well, that house and I, and I kind of feel like you should know a few things about it.

It was our first house. We'd lived in an apartment, and then a condo, and then that house! We moved in on my 22nd birthday.

I made a lot of dinners in that kitchen. Something about the house makes it so that the smells travel weirdly in it. If you're making dinner and you really want to know what it smells like, go to the top of the stairs. I know that sounds weird. Just trust me.

There's a spot in the kitchen, right above the dishwasher, where the counter turns. I find it's the perfect spot to sit on the counter and talk to your husband after he gets home from work and you're waiting for dinner to finish cooking.

I'm sure that while you're painting the master closet, you'll notice that there are some patches of drywall that look like they were done by a housewife. Guess what? They were. Yes, I did in fact patch some big areas of drywall that had been cut out of that closet by the previous owner. I'm a little bit proud of it. You can be impressed. 

Speaking of that closet, it's a really good place to make important phone calls. I stood in there when I was setting up my student teaching to get my master's degree, when I had to call my Dr. and beg them for some kind of medicine to take my breastfeeding pain away, and just about every time I talked to our pediatrician's office.

I brought four babies home to that house, you know. When my third little one was born, my two oldest were staying with my mother-in-law, but I (not so subtly) requested that they be home when we came home from the hospital. I didn't want anything more than to just be in our house, that house, your house, with our whole family. 

So many lessons were learned there. I know that sounds vague and sappy, but it would take a while to list them all, and this letter has probably gone on long enough, but maybe you should just know that I'm a different person than I was when I moved in to that house. Of course, that wasn't exactly the house's doing, but I can't help but feel like it played a part, you know?

You probably do know, because you're probably leaving a home that you kind of feel the same way about. And I'm sure that sometimes you, like me, look around your new house and you wonder if you made the right decision, if it was all really worth it, if this is the place your family's supposed to be. And you might get this ache in your throat when you think about that old home, and the learning and growing and loving and living you did there.

But just know that that house has been a home -- a really great home -- for someone else. And it can be a really great home for you, too. I'm sure of it. I wish you tons and tons of happiness, friend.