There’s no place like home.
On January 19, 2010, I checked my baggage and hopped on a plane (again) to fly to the other side of the world (again) – I flew home.
It’s been a weird transition calling this house in Italy my home. I’ve only been living in it since May; I still miscalculate the distance I am from the doors and where the light switches are, but it’s home. This is home.
Despite the awkwardness of it, despite the newness of it, so much of my life is contained in it – my best friend and husband, my two hilarious cats, trinkets from my life, trinkets from his life, the used furniture that makes up a newlywed couple’s first home together. And I love it; in all its awkward newness.
And it isn’t that the place that I used to call home doesn’t feel like home anymore, it’s just that while my family are still there (as well as a few boxes of my things, thanks mom), I know that I will never LIVE there again. It used to be the door marked an entrance to my home, but now it is a door that marks an entrance to my PARENTS’ home. And boy that’s a weird thought.
There was a time when (okay, don’t exile me for saying this) I thought it was an alien idea to even WANT to move out (I can feel your jaws collectively hit the ground, thanks). I never so strongly wanted to move out and so I didn’t – not until I got married. It wasn’t that I wanted to live there forever, I mean c’mon, I’m weird but not that weird; it was that I couldn’t imagine any other place ever feeling that good to walk into. And so why would I?
But now when I pull up to this strange house in the outskirts of Naples, Italy I feel that silent pull of a sigh; that feeling of, “Finally…home at last.” And after over a month away, and a 20 hour day of traveling I definitely felt that urge to sigh and that reassuring feeling that I was home.
And as reassuring as it is, it is also a little heartbreaking. I will never call the house I spent my dramatic teenage years, and my self-realizing twenties in, HOME again. It will never be the place I live, the place I walk into every afternoon and say, “Home sweet home.” It will be a place that I visit. A place that is somebody else’s sigh of relief. A place that I will always fondly remember as once being mine; once being my home.
So as I gaze around our living room and watch my cats throw around their toy, roll my neck to rid it of the kinks and think about what I have to do tomorrow, I feel that pull of a sigh. This is my new Home sweet home.
And I didn’t even need ruby red slippers to get here, my brown Converse did just fine.