Is your heart at home? Do you know your place in the world?
In a little over two months I will be going back home. Well, not home exactly, just back to the U.S. To what, exactly, I don't know. I really haven't missed the U.S. all that much.The things that I've been homesick for aren't really physical- although, there have been times when I would, if not kill, at least cheerfully maim someone for a Mcnugget. What I've really missed is the feeling of stability- of knowing the details of my friends lives, of feeling inconspicous in a crowd (and whoever thought I'd miss that feeling.). I miss lazy Sunday mornings in my local bookstore, and drinks with friends. I miss having a daily routine, with all the people I most care about in it. I miss the grounded feeling that home gives you- of knowing where you belong. But the truth is, I can't go back to the home I knew as a kid. I can't go back to the house I bought and made my own. I can't go back to the town I left, because I know deep down that it won't fit me anymore. Never did I guess- or I wouldn't have left. People's lives have gone on since I've been gone... and so has mine. Over the course of a year abroad, I've changed, and those who are nearest and dearest to me weren't there to see it. Will they welcome back the stranger in their friend's clothes? Maybe. Can I settle somewhere new and make a home all over again? Of course I can. "Home is where the heart is." And at heart, I am a Southern girl- who likes magnolias, iced tea and barbeque. I like good gospel music, good greens and fried chicken. But I also like J-pop, sake and (not so much) sashimi. I like the idea of weeks on the Riviera or quick jaunts to Brazil. Having opened my door to the world, I'll never be able to close it again. So what is a mixed up, cosmopolitan (hah!) jet-setting girl to do? Love the one you're with. When you don't know where home is, you make it where ever you go and whoever you're with. I've spent a year doing something I never dreamed I would. Paradoxically, I am both completely different from and more completely me than I ever have been before. A change in locale was just a kick in the pants to begin a change in me. And I'm glad I did it. Because now I know what I want- who I want in my life, what I want my life to be, what my heart longs for. And wherever I land next, I'll take that with me. I guess a year in the "real world" is a good idea for anyone who really wants to be able to appreciate exactly what it means to " go home" wherever or whoever that may be. Everyone needs a home. After all "home is the place where, when you go there, they have to take you in." Robert Frost So, I hope that all those out there who like me, have yet to find that soft landing place they can call home, find it or make it, somewhere on that country road.
Where is home? Home is where the heart can laughtwithout shyness. Home is where the heart's tears can dry at their own pace.
~ Vernon Baker