Where is home?
College students grapple with new things throughout their years of study – but right now a feeling of displacement is washing over me. It’s hard to create a feeling of home when you rarely stay in the same place for more than four months. I’m now half-way done with my Junior year of college, and yet I have no idea where home is.
I’ve moved so much in my life that I get confused when people ask me where I’m from. “I was born in Massachusetts, but my family lives in Texas now… and I go to school in Washington, DC.” Oh, and I’ve lived in Connecticut and Illinois too. Now I live in Cape Town, but soon I’ll be back in Texas, then to DC again. How will I identify myself when I go there? I’m not actually from either of those places.
But maybe that’s what I love so much about myself. I am a product of so many different cities, towns, states, cultures… and now countries. I don’t know where I’m going or where I want to live, but that’s part of the wonder of going into the field of international development. I am becoming a citizen of the world. I’ve never stayed in the same place for long, and I don’t see that changing any time soon.
The shock and awe of a new place will never get old for me. I’m living in Cape Town, South Africa, right now, but I’m already looking forward to my next adventure. Where am I going to move to next? I really want to join the Peace Corps after I graduate. Will I come back to Africa? Will I be able to go to South America and finally become fluent in Spanish? Who knows. All I know is that I’m excited to find out.
So maybe I don’t have a home in this world right now. When I try and envision home in my mind all I see are the faces of my family and friends that I hold most dear. I haven’t been “homesick” during my time abroad, but I really miss laughing so hard we start to cry with my mom or being incredibly sarcastic with my dad. I miss endless Sonic happy hour runs and watching stupid TV with my siblings. I miss seeing my dogs’ excited faces when I walk in the door. I miss walking up Mass Ave to school with my girlfriends and I miss holding my boyfriend’s hand through all of the weird adventures we get ourselves into.
So if that’s my home, yeah… I guess I’m homesick. (Are you relieved mom?)
See y’all in a month.