21. What does home mean to you?
There are two things that come to mind when I think of home. There is home the physical space we occupy, and the feeling of home that is created when I am with a specific group of people. And one home has never been enough for me. It may sound selfish, as if I’m trying to cast off something old in search of a better model but what I mean to say is that I think having multiple homes is the natural progression of a fulfilling life. Most of us follow a similar track. We grow up in a place, maybe move around, but then we leave the nest, have experiences, and then eventually settle down.
But I don’t think of home as one fixed spot for eternity, rather a destination that keeps changing and that you have to continuously look for, or continuously work to build. We are creatures of habit and look to transfer that feeling of home wherever we go and hopefully replicate it with new people. If you’re lucky you can continue this adventure until you’re ready to build a more permanent spot, but you should always be cautious about where you build because replication is not immune to individual agenda.
Growing up as a good Christian girl you pick up a few things from the Bible, and the Bible loves parables. When thinking about home my mind drifted to the parable of “The Wise and the Foolish Builder.” If you’re not familiar it goes a little something like this. There are these two builders, and one of them really loves the beach, so he builds his on the sand. The other guy knows that it’s better to build his house on something solid. I guess he likes hiking, or the woods so he builds his house on stone. Then a storm comes and the house that was built on the sand is destroyed, while the house made on stone remains intact.
There is no escaping the shit storm we call life. Home is a feeling that needs to be nurtured and valued. If you enter into that experience with the wrong people, the first sign of trouble will then cause it to collapse. I mean the beach is pretty and seems like it will be a lot of fun, but it won’t provide the support you need. The trick is to walk away from a home that has served its purpose, and search for a new site. I’ve had the opportunity to live, work, and travel to a lot of places. Each place brought people into my life whom I will never forget, but I always have to remember to continue forward.
To end with a cliche, home is where the heart is. And if you put your heart into every experience, leave yourself open to every opportunity then it might be broken, but it most certainly will be filled. And you will never be without a home.