Define: Home

There’s a room that’s painted white with pictures and plants. On the bed sits a dog who looks up unamused as I walk by, grumbles a bit, and decides I am not worth the energy. The bathroom is clean and lined with shelves. A fluffy bath mat covers the floor, the soap is fully stocked. I’m not sure where I am, yet, I know exactly where I am.
I feel both comfortable and out of place here. It feels mundane and exciting to be back. The long train rides I used to dread no longer bother me. And I am able to conflate to city life once again due to being a naturally fast walker.
I was walking to the train the other night. It was 10:30 pm on a Sunday and couldn’t help but stop in front of a considerably crowded Starbucks. I guess I’ve been gone a while. I couldn’t believe that Starbucks was even still open or that people were drinking coffee at nearly 11 pm. “Go to sleep” I wanted to tell them, “don’t you have somewhere to be in the morning?”
It’s morning,
and I have nowhere to be. I’m sitting in bed drinking coffee from the French press, writing to the sound of soppy cars. I’ve devised many versions of my life in this room. And now, the only trace of me is my name crusted in glitter on the wooden shelves. Shelves that held my books and clothes. Shelves that used to be my own.
When you’re younger, it’s important to have a space that’s defined as your own. Embroidered names on bedroom doors, wall colors that are nauseating to the adult eye. But the older I get, the less I define home as a physical space.
Home: Is laughing on the train with my best friend. Sitting in the foyer, listening to my dad play guitar. Drinking coffee with my mom. It’s a free day at the zoo in the middle of the winter. Watching a thunderstorm at camp in nothing but a flimsy jacket and shorts.
Home is where the people that matter to me are. It’s memories that I choose to remember. It’s the moments that I am experiencing now and the ones I have yet to experience.
I feel grateful to have more than one home and I’m excited to discover the places and people that will add to my collective and evolving definition.

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