I am eight years old, sitting in the back seat of my parents’ Volkswagen Beetle. It’s Friday night, November, and dark. My sister is curled into the far corner opposite me. I think she is sleeping. I am near to sleep as well, that place where thoughts float and my body releases the day.
I can see my parents in the front seats. Light from the dashboard lines the edges of their faces, Mom turned towards Dad as he drives. Their voices wrap around me, quiet and warm.
We had dinner out tonight, and then did grocery shopping. I can smell the bread, packed full in one of the brown paper grocery bags behind my seat. Ten loaves for a dollar.
The car tires hum against the road, and the engine chugs. Steady and sure. I know Dad is watching for the deer who sometimes step from the trees onto the road and into the light, and then stand, blinded. They and we are blessed. We always pass each other with space to spare.
In this memory, time and place, this is how I feel. Warm. Safe. Comforted and comfortable. Cared for. Loved. Belonging. Home. There is nothing more I need or want.
Here, now, times when my life does not feel warm or safe, not comfortable or comforted. When I don’t feel I belong, not loved, not home. When I only hear and see wants and needs demanding a piece of me, clamouring and noisy, I stop and let go.
I let go. I close my eyes. There, I see the night and my parents’ faces. I hear their voices and the car, humming. I smell fresh bread. I know my sister is near me, asleep on the seat. I breathe deep. Let my thoughts float, my body release the day. Feel just this.
Here, is love. This place, home, is within me. Warm, safe, comforted, comfortable. Cared for, belonging. All within me and created by me. I choose this. My home is within, my place of strength where I stand knowing who I am. I am love.
I open my eyes, return to the day and my life, carrying this within me.
Carry this into whatever I am doing. Make this part of my experience. I choose love, and I am home and safe.