I believe you can always “COME IN” my home. I am from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, the north side to be exact. To be inviting is a proverb that has become the principle in which the Davis family stands. No matter the circumstance, “You Can Come On In”.
When I was a child my mother and I lived with my grandparents. It was a safe haven, a center of learning for all ages, no matter color, ethnicity, nor religion. The house always was bright with laughter, creativity, and the smell of good home cooking. My day started with Captain Crunch Berries and The Smurfs, and ended with tears, nightmare, and cold chills. The neighborhood, in which I lived, was a melting pot for drug dealers, the sound of gun shots, and a burial ground for empty shell casings. Outside of our brightly lit wire fence lived danger, and chaos. Although the outside was destruction, the inside was a place where anyone could come on in. Once a stranger’s feet hit the porch, they became family.
Besides stuffing my face with cereal, and watching the cutest blue people I have ever seen, the majority of my family’s time was spent at church. Church became another safe haven an excuse to stay up late to study bible verses. Staying up late also allowed me to put off the night sweats and nightmares. My grandma would invite me in her room to recite my verse, and to get a goodnight sleep. The inside was a shelter for my family and I.
Furthermore, to celebrate Father’s Day my family has an annual picnic, consisting of masses of food, water fights, uninvited guest, smiling faces, and some bickering siblings. All arguments and disagreements seemed to be resolved over a rough game of football. I tend to only feel safe around the chaos of the inside world, rather than the outside. Always sketchy guests are present, but are never exposed. A discrete game of telephone is always an option, but my in the forefront you hear, “Come in, Come in”, the two words my grandma uttered to anyone or anything with mandibles big or small.
That is to say, after safe travels from church, my clean white t-shirt of a world was stained with chaos from the outside world. Blood of my uncle lit the streets as if it was Christmas lights. Those empty shell casings that filled the city steps were the remnants of the bullets that pierced members from the inside world. Although death didn’t greet my family that night, the outside world did. We didn’t shout “COME ON IN!!!” it invited itself as the sketchy picnic guests.
Therefore, we tend to invite things that are only inviting. I no longer look at the chaos outside my grandparent’s doors and the outside world. The outside is now viewed upon as the stranger who steps upon my front porch and is now family. Therefore, inviting the unwelcomed may change the guest list, but also your point of view. This I believe.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.