Just to clarify what ‘home’ means to me: it means somewhere you can return at the end of a long, exhausting day and hang up your metaphorical coat, and don your fuzzy slippers. Home is comfort, and familiarity. Home is where you play your music the loudest, where the mirrors have seen you grow out of your pimples and into your high heels. Where you’ve shed parts of your soul carelessly, knowing they’ll be preserved.
Home is a reflection, where you can sit and chat with your thoughts, see yourself as you really are. That familiar white window, with one cracked pane that always creaks when it swings open. Those warm walls, spattered with paint, childish drawings, a testament to the destructive power of Crayola and chalk. Stone floors, which allowed you to walk over them, never complaining. The ceilings, carrying memories of laughter, grief, even scandal.
Home is the twilit garden where you sat and dreamed. Prayed for magic powers, then later, for money, fame, a cure for cancer.
I’ve moved nine houses ever since I was a child. So you could say, I didn’t have a stable house. In a way, I lived like a nomad. We moved when the landlords got nasty, when the rent somewhere else was more affordable, and when we just needed a change of scenery.
But all those nine houses, rigged out of brick and mortar, have been home to me.
Because home isn’t where the heart is. Your heart is safely ensconced in your body, pumping away to sustain you. People are home. I could live in the desert under a tent one day, on a cruise ship the next, and at the bottom of the ocean, in a submarine. And I could call them home.
If I have someone I love there, someone who knows me, my memories, and someone who can reflect who I am in a way that is familiar, and comfortable, then no matter where I am, I am home.