There Really Is…
No place like home. It is the place we crave (whether we crave the reality or the memory or the fantasy of “home”) when things are not going well. When our hopes are dashed. When we are sick. When we are afraid or lonely. We probably don’t throw up our hands and cry out “I wanna go home!” like children are allowed to do, but I think that’s how we feel inside. “I want my mama!” I want my bed, my house, my cocoon.
When people hurt me unexpectedly, I want to be comforted and protected. Where else but home for that? When I am afraid, disappointed, or rejected, I want to be held close. Told that I am perfect just as I am and there is no better little girl in the world. Where else but home? There may not be anyone there anymore- at home- but the aura of the years, the memory of family and of love that permeate the air give strength. The echoes of time spent together. Becoming who we are. Or who we were. We don’t remain the same, but our need for home- whatever that may be- is a kind of forever thing. I have spent a lot of time away from home in my life. Often in Europe, as I am doing now. I have been in Prague for almost six weeks. In my younger years, it did not take the same toll on my mother to have me away, but after the passing of my father and her own journey into age and confusion, it costs her so much more to be alone. And so, it is time- for a time- that I return to the home of my youth to revive the comfort, safety, support and love that I have sought there. My turn to make “home” for my mom. And what a privilege it is to do so.
“Someday, I would like to go home. The exact location of this place, I don’t know, but someday I would like to go. There would be a pleasing feeling of familiarity and a sense of welcome in everything I saw. People would greet me warmly. They would remind me of the length of my absence and the thousands of miles I had traveled in those restless years, but mostly, they would tell me that I had been missed, and that things were better now I had returned. Autumn would come to this place of welcome, this place I would know to be home. Autumn would come and the air would grow cool, dry and magic, as it does that time of the year. At night, I would walk the streets but not feel lonely, for these are the streets of my home town. These are the streets that I had thought about while far away, and now I was back, and all was as it should be. The trees and the falling leaves would welcome me. I would look up at the moon, and remember seeing it in countries all over the world as I had restlessly journeyed for decades, never remembering it looking the same as when viewed from my hometown.”