The closing is scheduled for this Wednesday. After 6 months of culling, paring and finally, relentlessly storing and disposing of all things that bore any semblance of personality, sentimentality or non-essential purpose, I thought we were closer to done.This weekend we went back for “five things” and to clean. There were far more than five things, as if new layers of our lives were rising to the surface. I kept my mind on the task at hand, but every little thing opened a new chasm.

Through the window the madras fabric I used over the sandbox to create shade, whipped in the wind. I saw the girls running circles in the yard, heard the echoes of Sean slinging the nail gun. I hadn’t expected to feel an emotional cocktail of loss, elation and, oddly, failure.

The reasons for selling our house have been clear to us for many months— fundamentally too small and ineffectively laid out for our family. The ghosts of home improvement projects haunt us, where others see beauty and triumph, we see the corners cut or the harsh words exchanged as the last light slipped through the cracks before we finished.

I am burying my nose in each room, cleaning, erasing the fatigue of this process and trying to reveal again all those things which made this the house of our dreams 6 long and short years ago. I only hope I have enough to get it done with my heart intact.