What I love and don’t fear – domiciliphilia

hyssop beginning to flower

Hyssop is blooming in my garden, reminding me of Psalm 51: Thou shalt sprinkle me with hyssop, and I shall be cleansed. Thou shalt wash me, and I shall become whiter than snow. Three years ago seeds must have fallen into the ground from the plant I’d bought; why they waited so long to sprout this spring, I don’t know.

The zinnias are going strong, and now the purple coneflowers are coming on. I got distracted and forgot about them when they were dormant and the foxgloves were dominating that space, and by planting the red zinnias I broke my rule about not having red and magenta-colored flowers together. That could have been a disaster!

But they seem to be getting along o.k. Even when the landscape is not living up to my visions, I’m relaxed out in the garden in the midst of my accomplishments. They are really God’s accomplishments; the little contributions I made could never on their own have created the splendor that is right here in my back yard.

An orange dragonfly posed for a picture.

I have joked that I approach agoraphobia, but that was coming at the truth from the wrong direction. I just love being home and working at home. Until I came home to the Orthodox Church, I dragged my feet even about going to church, much as I loved the people there, and God. And though I will gladly drive and fly all over the country and even the world to see and be with those dear to me, it’s annoying just having to run errands in my town and break my concentration, my focus on home.

It’s not laziness, it’s an attentiveness that encompasses many kinds of mental and physical work. You’ve seen the long lists of things homemakers are called upon to do; well, I have my own intensely personal version of that list, and only God knows all that is on it, what burdens I carry and how light they are here in my realm.

No, I don’t fear going out, I don’t have a phobia of The Marketplace. But when I do go, it is always with the anticipation of feathering my nest with things I will bring back, or with the confidence that I will soon return to the place where I am most alive and productive…and the hope that having accomplished those outside tasks I will have a longish reprieve from distractions, and be able to get on with my best work.

I’m not agoraphobic, I’m domiciliphilic.


10 thoughts on “What I love and don’t fear – domiciliphilia

  1. So that is what hyssop looks like; nothing like I imagined!

    Sometimes I just have to get. out. of. the. house! Now that I have finally planted a (rather sparse) garden, very simple but in need of tending, just stepping out into the back yard is often all that is needed.

    To be domiciliphilic must be an indication of great contentedness with home. I would like to achieve greater degrees of that one of these days . . .

    We went to the Orthodox Church today, and that felt a lot like home in all the best ways, despite not understanding Greek, but knowing all of it was praise and worship.


  2. Well said!!! I agree so much. Adam doesn't quite understand why I complain of not having enough time at HOME, being HOME, not being OUT. Since I don't work outside the home, he assumes I have as much time there as I like. But the distractions! As you say. I like that term: domiciliphilic. That's a mouthful!


  3. I didn't go out as I thought I should Friday morn…but planned then to go later in the day….but then there were so many things to do and I didn't want to enter the stream…so Saturday morn was next and then it was after lunch before I relented and went to the store and post office and dry cleaners….and back home again!


  4. I love this. Domiciliphilic. I would much rather be at home tending to my nest and family than out doing errands and whatnot. What a sweet surprise your garden gave you: a blooming Hyssop 3 years later. I'd call that a present from a grateful garden.


  5. I'm exactly the same way, Gretchen. I get angry if I'm away from home too much. Of course, that has to be dealt with also!

    I get very little done in a day with interruptions whether from people coming in or me having to go out. My favorite day is when I am home by myself all day with no one coming or going. Pure bliss!


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