I handed over the keys (actually left them secured in Lotta's box) early November 1st, with one last look, I stepped out of the apartment door for the last time, walked down the path for the last last time and looked back down Ulvsundavägen for the last time. Home exchanging has been such a process for me. Both literally and figuratively. Ironically, it feels like I'm leaving and forgetting all these parts of me (where I'd make trips back and forth to clear it all out and erase all traces) and being able to in less than an hour, pack up and go forward. What feels like a myth will take many days of processing: it's almost like something that never was, but will always be happening.
The apartment saw me live, fade, and come back to life again.
And even though there was never a person to "come home to" in this apartment, I celebrated everything and everyone I love in this space in one way or another. Even if was just writing their name on a piece of paper or sending them a secret wish for Real Love right before I fell asleep at bedtime.
And even though the apartment was not mine or decorated with my taste, some things about it exuded my personality, by accident. For example, there were flaws in the apartment.
I walked out that door, slightly wistful, but also so relieved. I am ready to put my energy somewhere else now. I'm so excited to get to start a new chapter in Prescott hopefully working with horses in my favorite southwest setting that is a traditional ranch. Or I am thinking of homesteading by turning my entire property into a functional gardening space.
Life is not what I thought it would be. But it's hard and good. Bitter and sweet. And I'm not looking back. I'm not going that way :-)