Where is home?


 Where is home?

Marilyn from Communicating Across Boundaries asked this question on facebook today. It's a well-rehearsed topic for third culture kids* and, I guess, adults who move around.

Where is home?

I saw the question and, feeling slightly bitter, wrote, "Home is a furphy."

Because it's one of those concepts that seems too slippery to hold on to. Is it people? Is it place? How does growth and movement affect it? Do I have it? Why not? Am I the only one?

These are the things I know about 'home'. Do you have any to add?

Home is where you feel safe.

Home is where you are known.

Home is where you have a voice.

Home is where pyjama wearing (or its metaphysical equivalent) is mostly okay.

Home is where you can be ill or unwell or grumpy or on your own and that's mostly okay too.

Home is where you know the rules.

Home is where you're comfortable with the rules.

Home is where you set some of the rules.

Home is where you're familiar with the terrain, you understand the elements, you know what's likely to happen and you know when something is surprising.

Home is where you can embrace and welcome others.

Or close the door and keep them out.

Home is attached to both people and place. It can be where 'your people' have lived for years. Or it can be somewhere completely new.

Home can change.

Home can move.

Home can be completely destroyed.

Home can be renewed or rebuilt or re-thought. 

Home can be cultivated and strengthened.

Home has stories attached to it that you have permsision to tell.

Home is where you exhale.



*definition: those who grow up overseas in a 'third culture', neither their own, nor that of the country they're in