Summer was beginning to calm down as the fall began to creep around the corner. Long hot days started to turn into warm soft kisses on my skin with a cool breeze to accompany it.
Stepping off the bed making my way to the small kitchen as the old floor underneath my feet would creak and say good morning to me.
Sleepy eyes still tired from the long night before, but as the summer said goodbye, there was no time to sleep in and miss the beauty of a chilly morning. Every sunrise like clock work I'd open the door and close the screen, allowing all of the cool air to refresh our old space.
The sounds of the cars buzzing by on the Westbank Expressway paired with the sound of the coffee making it's way into the coffee pot was so calming for me. It was almost always a quiet morning in the Pink House.
The smell of fresh cut wet grass entered the air and it brought back nostalgic feelings. Do you remember as a kid? Ready for school stepping outside and seeing the dew on the grass continue to collect itself and the smell in the air was always the same? Every morning? Yeah, that smell. That feeling.
Everyday I'd take my son to his little white brick school across the Huey P. Long Bridge in the city of Harahan. We'd listen to his favorite song, "Love of my Life" by Erykah Badu and Common. It's not even a joke it literally is his favorite song and every time we'd get in the car he'd say, "Mommy, mommy, can you play my song?" He'd have me put it on the entire ride and we would just sing together as we drove across the bridge, over the beautiful river with the sights of all the industrial boats that I love to see. I know the river to some people may just be a river and nothing more. But for me, it is so much more. I can't explain it and I can't describe it. But, any time I talk about my favorite things that dwell in the city that stole my heart, it is as if I've lived there before in a past life. That is exactly how it feels and so when I would pass this river, it just felt like home. And maybe because I am a writer, I tend to over romanticize things. But, I can promise you, that this is not one of those things. This isn't a moment in which I am trying to capture something so that my reader feels good. This is exactly how I felt about my life and the things I experienced everyday when I lived there. There was always some type of nostalgic or dejavu type of moment as if my soul dwelled in the river once before. That drive across that bridge every morning always put me in the best mood. And even when my morning didn't start off as slow and peaceful, even when my mornings started off hectic, even on the days I woke up frustrated, that short bridge drive with the water moving in different directions and the old rusted industrial boats, I instantly felt peace.
By the time I got back home, my love would be awake. He would always hug me from behind and say grand rising beautiful, with a soft kiss on my neck, as I poured my coffee into my huge baby Yoda mug. At the time, it was the only mug I owned. Swirls of whipped cream and hot liquid underneath was the official start to my day. As I'd sip my coffee and stare at the cars passing, the wet grass, and the sun beginning to rise even more, he would open every curtain and let the light steal the darkness of the night that was still trying to hold on. He'd grab his coffee that I made for him and he'd put his herb in the pipe that sat at the end of his mug that I had gotten for him on his birthday. It was a sip and smoke mug and it was perfect for the early mornings. Nothing too much, just a good hit, with the best coffee because I made it.
Sometimes we'd talk and have a chatty conversation in the mornings and sometimes we'd just sit there with each other drinking coffee and listening to music.
Sometimes, I feel as though I took the little pink house for granted. My mind at the time was not where it is today. Although then I was starting to mature, I think my heart sometimes always wanted more. A bigger kitchen, more space to walk around in, an updated home. Now that I look back, I still understand why we left the pink house, but if I could go back and do it all over again, I would.
I spent a lot of time there because of COVID and sometimes I think I just got very anxious and bored of seeing the same 4 walls for so long. And now that I remember how much peace I had there, I miss it very much. I miss the beautiful tapestries we had on the walls and the string lights we put up. I miss the neon lights in the room at night. I miss the light up stars that Jeremy got for BabyJ to have in his room at night. I miss the sound of Jazz music coming from BabyJ's room at 2am because he wouldn't go to bed without it. I miss staying up late watching hours of conspiracy theory videos on YouTube drinking wine with my baby. I miss stepping outside with him to smoke late at night as we watched the stars on nights we could actually see them. I miss the rain storms and late night tea. And even though we can have that anywhere, I miss it..... there. I think what made that house so special is because it was the first place I ever lived in that wasn't In Texas, wasn't 20 minutes away from family and friends. I was "isolated", but in a good way. Now that I've matured so much in the past two years, I see exactly why that isolation was needed. I grew so much in that house and I wouldn't be who I am today if I hadn't taken the leap of faith and moved 6 hours across the state line. That house was my first step to the person I am right now. I learned independence there, I learned how to not be so much up under my family, I learned how to be alone.
To the pink house on the corner of West Drive, thank you for the part you played in my growth.