I returned home this afternoon from a trip home. Which sounds weird but it isn’t. “Home” is where I was born and raised, and “home” is where I now live and am raising my kids. So you see, there are two places I call home.
In reality I know that “home” is where I live now. It’s where I am making my life and where I live with my husband and kids and dog. But in my heart, home will always be where I was born, where I made lifelong friends, and the place that I can truly relax in. It’s the place where I grew up under the same safe roof with my parents and brothers.
Despite the ups and downs, as the age-old adage goes, “You can’t escape your roots.” And I wouldn’t want to. No disappointment, sadness, confusion, heartache, or mistake will ever overpower my strong connection to my hometown.
I live a different life now. One that I am embracing and building with my family. I like that. I like living under the same safe roof with them, and I want us to have a place that we all call home, even though it’s different from my original definition of home.
When I was teaching a writing course to first-year college students many years ago, I asked the students to write one sentence on a slip of paper about what “home” meant to them.
One girl wrote, “Home is where you do your laundry.”
Her response made me smile, and it has always stuck with me.
My mom and I did a load of laundry (well, mostly my mom because that’s what happens when you go home) over the weekend, and tomorrow I will do a load of laundry back here at home.
I like having two places to call home. I like reconnecting with the comforts of my childhood hometown, but I must remember — I do more laundry here than any other place.
It’s good to be home.
What does home mean to you?