I said it! Don’t be shocked. It just sort of slipped out. I referred to my son’s residence as his “home”! I probably am the only one that even noticed. I’m not sure why it struck me so. I have ruminated about it for weeks!
My son has been renting an apartment with his friend for over a year now. He is still a college student so, this residence is temporary. Does he consider it his “home”? He does sleep there. He has most of his belongings there. He comes and goes from there. It’s a place to relax and recharge.
I’ve not discussed these thoughts with my son, or my daughter for that matter. Do I even want to venture into such a conversation with them? Do they still feel as though they belong in their childhood home? Or, maybe they share similar sentiments with the character Andrew Largeman in the movie, The Garden State (2004):
“You know that point in your life when you realize the house you grew up in isn’t really your home anymore? All of a sudden, even though you have some place where you put your shit, that idea of home is gone.”
“You’ll see one day when you move out it just sort of happens one day, and it’s gone. You feel like you can never get it back. It’s like you feel homesick for a place that doesn’t even exist. Maybe it’s like this rite of passage, you know. You won’t ever have this feeling again until you create a new idea of home for yourself, you know, for your kids, for the family you start, it’s like a cycle or something. I don’t know, but I miss the idea of it, you know…”
What does “home” even mean? There’s no question it’s a noun. But, is it a person or group of persons, a place or a thing (concept/idea/feeling), or perhaps it’s a combination of them all.
For me, a home provides a connection to the past. It’s a place where one belongs or is understood. It’s familiar and recognizable. A home can form as a result of biology, circumstance or choice.
Is it possible to have more than one place you call “home”? Perhaps we can rediscover home again and again. Is “home” something we can possess within our being?
In some ways, I suppose it’s just another of life’s transitions for our family. Reality just hits me at unsuspecting moments. There will come a time in the not so distant future (if it hasn’t already arrived) that my children will make and consider their “home” elsewhere.
What does “home” encompass for you?
Read more from Phoebe Wulliman Graber on her blog, In Momopause