Note: I originally had the idea for this piece back in November as part of the social media contest “Letters To Home” (h/t Tabitha Brown for the inspiration). But I never got around to writing it, and it’s been in various drafting stages for the last month or so. But here it is finally. I hope you enjoy it.
Deep in the hills of the Ohio River Valley, there is a small town located smack dab on a major highway. In this small town, tucked away in a mostly quiet neighborhood is a little gray house. Inside the house there is a hole.
Well, not a hole as you’re probably thinking of it. This Hole is a small room, with tables, a bookcase, and a TV. There is also a bed, covered in blankets, pillows, plushies and stim toys. In the Hole there is also a Bif.
Hi, I’m the Bif. This is my hole. The plushies are mine. The stim toys are mostly mine. This blanket nest is mine too. This is my hole.
The name of this room started as a joke from a YouTube video. The joke became funnier after I came out. Now I’m the ace in the hole.
But it’s so much more than a hole. At one point a little over a year and a half ago this space was where my husband and I held ourselves together while we tried to figure out how to keep our heads above water after he lost his job. It provided comfort and closeness. Even back then it felt like just the small, safe place that was needed.
After a time it became less of a space he relied on, but somewhere we could still stay close and just be with each other. We still spend evenings and his days off curled up in blankets watching YouTube or playing video games. But for me, I still very much draw comfort and solace from this space, even more than the rest of my house. That’s not to say I dislike our house at all. I love so much about this house that’s become our home.
But this space is different. I’ve spent so much time here. Wrapped up in blankets snuggling plushies on the bad days. Writing and reaching out connecting with people on the good days. I’ve eaten, slept, laughed until I passed out and cried until I wished I would, all in this room. Major mental health breakthroughs have happened, as well as nonverbal phases weathered, all from here.
My husband is my safe space in a person, but this room, the Hole, is just as much my safe space. I’ve felt recently like my days of spending so much time here might be coming to an end. There are things I need to do, life I need to live. But I will forever be grateful to this space for being what I needed for so long.