People are all about avoiding words. Some people tend to avoid profanity even when absolutely justified. Others tend to run from any language having to do with death. Me? Well, lately I’ve been having trouble using the word “home.” I used to know what home was. What it meant and what relevance it had in my life. But that was before things changed… somehow. Now I can’t seem place the word in a sentence with enough relevance to justify its use. It’s just another word that I can’t truly relate with.
“I’m going home.”
No… that will never work. Instead I’ll say something else.
“I’m going to my house.”
It’s been that way since I moved out; the perils of a twenty-three-year-old drifter introvert, where no place is permanent and nothing there is impactful. Home is a bed, a TV, some books, and the promise that I’ll move on in ten months.
I’m asked, “What is home to you?” I have a quick answer that I’m certain is the truth. Home is being with the people that you truly love. But what happens when you’re not with the few people that meet that lofty definition? What happens when you live from place to place, just trying to survive graduate school? Home becomes an idea, an ideal, a future expectation of something great. A time when you’ll have a loving spouse, a couple of cats, and possibly a few children running around.
I was a lot more confident in my definition of home when I was a child. It was when I was on the receiving end of that relationship. But the first of three phases of my life has long expired, and now I spend my life in search of home once more. An adventurous spirit and an mind open to all of the future possibilities will get me part of the way there. Still, I worry that even when I marry my fiancee whom I love deeply, we’ll both be in the same boat. A boat on a course to an unknown destination, and it might not make a stop at home for quite a long time.
Maybe there’s no such thing as home. Home indicates true contentment, true happiness, true comfort, and true love. And in a world increasingly unsure of if anything’s true at all, I’m concerned that home is nothing more than a figment of the imagination. But then I stare into her eyes. “You are like home to me,” I think as I clasp her hands and we head out on our next road trip. It doesn’t matter where I am, I’m happy when I’m with you.
I think people control the definition of home, whether they have plenty or are struggling to get by. Home is not a destination or a location. It can’t be measured by possessions or money. It is you, me, and faith. And with that, a home becomes unshatterable, because it’s not based on emotions or situations or locations. So maybe I shouldn’t have to search for home at all, but instead search for ways to make the home I have better.
About the photo: “Off the Beaten Path” Can I make it to those trees over there? How far is it? What will I find? Life’s greatest adventures are right in front of you.
A rare day indeed. I followed the Daily Post prompt. Oh no, what if I’m becoming a follower?