A few minutes ago two little kiddies stopped on the sidewalk in front of my townhouse. I watched from the couch as they stepped onto the porch, inches from the door. One of them stared into the dark entryway, confused. "Is this our home?" she asked her brother. "No, come on!" Her brother said. And I guess they ran off together in search of their real home.
How do you know you're home? Is it your favorite city? A house that smells like homemade bread? The comfy flannel sheets you got for Christmas? Family and friends who get you through a hard work week?
My faithfulness to Lodi has been tested since I sprained my ankle last Thursday. Nothing like an incapacitating injury to purge me of self-sufficiency and to teach me to rely on strangers and neighbors and friends alike. I admit I've thought often about how nice it would be to have family around, people I can call at a moment's notice, without feeling guilty, to drive me around for daily errands. Because that's what family is for, right? The only family I have here (aka Jonathan) has been gracious enough to take a lot of time from work for me, but I can only ask so much of him. So I've been forced to turn to friends.
It's hard to ask for help... in my case, I'm guessing it's a pride thing (I hate to admit it--but that just proves it's a pride thing.) So I think it's been good for me.
I was blessed to have immediate help after I sprained my ankle. Just a few houses down from my fall were two roofers and an older gentleman who drove me to my complex and then literally carried me halfway through my complex to my door.
I'm blessed with a friend who will let a friend drive her car to drive me to an interview, even if that means she'll be late to an appointment.
I'm blessed with a friend who will leave work and drive an unfamiliar car to take me to work, and then wait for an hour until the interview is finished.
I'm blessed with a friend who not only picks me up and takes me out to lunch, but who then drives me to the dentist and comes back for me to take me home.
And I'm blessed with friends who are on standby, waiting and willing to help when they can, shouldering me on their back through the airport if they need to.
It may take me awhile to feel comfortable in Lodi, but now I guess I would add "sprained ankle" to the list of things that makes a home.