Today I am sitting in my living room looking out on a wet, cloud covered evening. The maple tree across the street has burgundy and green boughs that are shaking ever so slightly with breezes that waft down the street. I’ve not yet turned on any lights and a gloom has settled over the furniture like a dark gray blanket.

Faint memories of my youth come to mind as I sit here and watch the cool shadows, times when I arrived home after a frustrating day at school. The walk itself was usually enjoyable: store windows shone with yellow warmth in the fading light, the smell of fallen leaves and their crisp crunches under foot. The slight chill in the air that made me wish for a pair of gloves.

Arriving home, I’d open the door to my house and my senses would instantly be overwhelmed with the comforting aroma of my mother’s chocolate chip cookies or Best Ever Chocolate Cake.

But it wasn’t the treats that I looked forward to. After I yanked off my coat and shoes, I’d run upstairs to my bedroom. It was slightly cool, dark, silently waiting, and, for a few moments, I simply enjoyed the feeling of being surrounded by my things without any distractions. Safety. Security.

At the time, it was the most comforting feeling in the world. And today it still is.

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