August 26, 2012

A house is not a home

The moment the loud music stopped and the laughter of my friends faded away, I began to feel empty. I dreaded their departure because it meant that I have to spend a few agonizing moments in this house alone. The fact that we just watched Insidious has nothing to do with how I'm feeling. The thought of a demon with "fire on his face" creeping around the house might be scary, but that's just not what's bothering me right now. I called up my brother and told him to come home right away. I'm not just fulfilling my duty as the eldest in the house by making sure that he's safe at home before nightfall. Actually, I told him to hurry back because being in this empty house is torture.

The silence is deafening. It makes me feel miserable. I do have moments when I crave for solitude, but this just isn't one of them. I suddenly regret those times when I used to say that I want to move out of this house because there's practically no privacy here. If you live with my family, you're almost never alone. Our house is small to the point that no matter where you go, you won't be able to avoid being heard whenever you're on the phone or when you simply want to cry peacefully. There were times when I felt as if I was being suffocated because everyone was too close for comfort. I realized that I never meant those things. Maybe I was just too caught up in my mood swings. As I lie here in my room with nothing but the sound of the electric fan in the background, I realized that I wouldn't trade my family for this silence.

This place isn't a home right now. To me, it is just a house. People say that home is where the heart is. I can agree with that because the little pieces of my home aren't here. Three of them are in Mandaluyong while the other is still making his way back here. I miss home. Our family isn't the boisterous kind. If you do hear a noise coming from our house, it would most likely come from our most energetic family member, our baby Jon. He annoys us when we're all trying to rest peacefully, but whenever he's away, his absence is immediately felt. I always considered him as the life of our house. He fills it with his non-stop babbling and contagious laughter. He left this morning, but I already miss him.

I also miss Mom and Dad. I miss exchanging stories with Mom and having random arguments with Dad. Being alone here feels really uncomfortable because this is the first time they ever went out of town together. Before, one of them was left behind to look after the children. I guess Michemm and I have grown up to the point that they trust us with the house now. It seems like an accomplishment, but there are times when I wish time would slow down. Growing up would eventually mean leaving this house permanently. I hope I'll be strong enough to go when that day comes. That won't be happening yet, so I guess I shouldn't think about it so much.

I cannot wait for them to be back. I will look forward to the day when this house will be a home again. For now, all I can do is pray for their safety. I want to hear Jon giggling over the Spongebob games he plays online, Mom scolding my little brother because of his shenanigans and Dad watching TV on full volume. I want everyone to be back to where we all belong in.

Come back soon, everyone. It's just not the same without you.

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