While Cecilia and I were driving to Green Lakes to try out her new bike today, I had a momentary feeling of disconnect. As I drove, I felt like a stranger to my surroundings, as though I had just moved here. I was incredulous at how I could possibly know where I was going and then, as familiarity came back, I wondered how these places have come to be so familiar to me.
Yet, do I ever really feel like I’m home? Or will that always be somewhere else? Somewhere that is probably in the past, left with a younger version of myself. I can still go “home” but I do so as my current self, with all the change and baggage that entails. At some point, probably during college or soon after, as is typical, home became amorphous. I could be completely alone at home or I could travel home. The place where my bed was and where I ate food and could bathe.
For someone who puts so much importance and meaning in the concept of “place”, the shifting quality of “home” can be unnerving. What makes a place your home? Is it merely the structure that currently holds your belongings? Does it have permanence?
Perhaps, at a certain point, MY ideas of home don’t matter so much. I have to be content with defining “home” in the context of Cecilia now. I am home with her. I am home to her. As long as I can provide comfort to her, that place we are in will be home.
Are you home yet?