It was just a picture on Instagram of two dogs asleep on a sofa in a cozy, warmly lit room tagged: "Good to be home."
My now-married son was back from his honeymoon, back in the Pacific Northwest. Back home?
But home is here. Oh, sure, he lives there and works there, but home is here. Where we hide Easter baskets in obvious places and the boys run and look for them pretending they're hard to find.
It's here where we light a fire on Christmas morning and Dad has his sausage-and-egg casserole all made and ready to put in the oven for brunch.
Where I used to read to them at night and get up every morning - thousands of mornings - hurrying breakfasts into tummys, books into backpacks and two little boys out the door before the school bell rang.
Home is here. This is home.
How did it happen that in a blink of an eye, home is now somewhere else and Mom is no longer No. 1?
I'm lucky to be No. 3 - if you count the dogs.
Someone said, "Just wait. You'll keep dropping. Wait'll the grandkids come."
Now I know how my mother must have felt all those years when I was so busy with husband, children, dogs and home. She, too, kept losing her place in my life.
The girls were over playing bridge the other day when we saw a bustle of activity next door. New neighbors had moved in and the little boys were running in from school and scurrying off to football practice.
I so well remember those days. An old lady used to live in that house and she told me once that she loved looking out her window watching me with my boys.
She was in a wheelchair and we kept the shrubbery low so she could see all the goings-on.
She said, "It reminds me of when I was a young mother raising my two sons."
That was 22 years ago and now I'm the old lady at the window.
I wonder if her heart broke each time she dared to look out?
Elizabeth Flynn is a freelance writer who hails from Indianapolis, Ind., and Isle of Palms, South Carolina. She and husband John have two adult sons and a new daughter-in-law.
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