“When one door closes, another opens.”
—Alexander Graham Bell

My parents are putting our family home on the market this week and it’s been a really tough move for all of us to wrap our heads around. They’ll stay in the same town at least until my brother graduates high school but we all know it won’t be the same. Cleaning out my childhood bedroom, donating old clothes and toys, painting over the striped walls in our kitchen… Every step feels like a particularly painful part of growing up. I know it’s the right choice for our family but it’s been heart-wrenching to slowly say good-bye to the place where we grew up.

Every corner of that home is filled with countless childhood memories. My sister and I taking over the playroom with a Playmobil village that deserved a spot in their catalog. My parents surprising us with Coach on Christmas morning. Setting up obstacle courses for all our neighborhood friends. Celebrating my dad’s 40th birthday with a big tent on the front lawn. Learning my back handspring on the trampoline. Eating veggies from my mom’s garden. Hosting a French exchange student. Picking flowers from my dad’s peony bushes. Celebrating my high school graduation. Finding out I got into Bucknell. Saying good-bye to Fenway. Launching my business from the dining room table. The surprise launch party my family threw me the week before it went live. Bringing Rory home. More than a dozen Christmas mornings with my grandmother and cousins.

We had a good family cry with everyone home a couple weeks ago and it was pretty incredible to hear everyone share their favorite memories in that house. Big transitions like this one always remind me how profoundly lucky I am to have the parents I do and how proud I am to be a big sister to my siblings, all of whom are funny and smart and growing up so fast. It’s the people who make a house a home and I’m so unbelievably thankful that these are my people. Goodbye, beautiful home, and hello to our next chapter.

19 thoughts on “THE END OF AN ERA.

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  1. Thank you everyone for such thoughtful notes! It’s so nice to know I’m not alone.

    Hill — I am so, so sorry about your home being destroyed in a natural disaster. That really puts things into perspective. I hope you and your family are resettled. If there’s ever anything I can do (a little decor for your new place?), please let me know.

  2. This seriously makes me want to cry! My parents still live in my childhood home, but I know those days are winding down and it’s devestating.

    My best friend’s parents just sold their gorgeous historic house that I always saw as my “second” home, and when I teared up during my last visit there her mom said something that really stuck with me: the fact that you have such an emotional attachment to the place means that you had a happy childhood, and it’s time to let it go so that someone else can have that same sense of security and love as they grow up. Houses usually outlive people, so it’s pretty cool to think of all the memories that will keep being made there!

  3. I got seriously teary eyed reading this. My childhood home was destroyed in a natural disaster and I still get a little sad when I think about it. It’s crazy that a thing made of brick and wood can hold so many emotions. But you’re right it’s the people that truly make a house a home so I know the next house your parents live in will hold just as many special memories and happy emotions
    From Mississippi With Love

  4. I always thought I would be upset about moving. MY parents have talked about it before, but I always shot the idea down. But recently, the neighbourhood has been changing (and not for the better), and I’m the one pushing for a move. I think somethings change is the best thing for a person. It can give you a new perspective and lease on life.


  5. aw it almost brought a tear to my eye … I am imagining if my parents sell our house in France how much I would cry … I love how close you are to your family I am an only child and I can’t wait to have many kids to fill our home with laughter 🙂 Good luck to you all for this big move!


  6. My parents have mentioned thoughts of packing up and moving once my little sister graduate from college. It’s a bit sad to know that I won’t be able to come home to the house I grew up for the holiday. But I think wherever my parents are, that will be home.

  7. Hi, Mackenzie,
    I know how tough that can be. I went through that once before. The worst part? I drive past my community almost everyday, AND my uncle lives in the same community so I can’t “avoid” it either 🙁

    If I may ask, is there a specific reason they are selling it?

  8. I know that this is coming for me in the next few years. With me halfway through college and my brother being a senior in high school my parents have started talking about selling. That’s a lot to pack away; there are so many memories! Good luck to you and your family!

    All That Glitters

  9. “When one door closes, another opens.” – Well said!
    I entirely understand you! This is such a big change and so many memories that you leave in this place… My parents sold the family home a few years ago and it wasn’t an easy period, but now I think it was a positive change for all of us. 🙂
    Wish you all the best!

    Carpet cleaners Wimbledon

  10. Vett — I know that feeling! Best of luck to you guys. I’m certain it will be worth it in the end!

    Portuguese Prepster — That is so good to know! I’m excited to help them feel settled again in a new place. Thank you for making me feel a little better about the whole thing!

    Kathleen — Right back at you! Love you!

    Hunter — Great to know that you are feeling settled in in your new home. I’m sure I’ll be feeling the same in a few months! Thanks for reading 🙂

  11. Leaving your family home can be so difficult! I remember moving from my family home in Utah like it was yesterday. I had so many memories in that house and it was so weird to realize that I wouldn’t have it anymore; however, I love my new home too, and I wouldn’t trade the life I have for anything else! Good luck with the move 🙂

    Prep on a Budget

  12. aw, I totally understand! My parent’s sold my childhood home over a year ago and built a new home. I was so against it and upset but once the new house was ready, it felt just like home again! I think you’ll find that wherever your parents are, will feel like home again!

  13. that is so tough, but seems like you’re all making the best of it. my parents just told me they’re going to downsize and sell our home too — i’m still in denial! you’ll make new memories in your new family home 🙂