Whether it be college, a new job, or a spontaneous move, many people find themselves carving out a life for themselves in a new place, with new people. Home may be where the heart is, as the saying goes, but what about those of us whose hearts are torn between more than one place? How do you cope with the feeling of missing home while being at (a different) home?
These are a few thoughts on this phenomenon, as someone whose two homes are 5,000 miles apart.
1. You will never get to leave as ceremoniously as you plan. You try to do everything you can and no matter what, it still goes by too fast.
2. The first time you call a new(er) residence “home” without even thinking about it, you’ll feel a slice through your heartstrings. The pain will subside, but it will never go away.
3. You learn that home is not just a place; it’s the people, the coffee shops, the trees, the pavement, and the places where you’ve made memories.
4. Making a home in another person is convenient, because they can travel, but is not secure. When your home is a group of people, you may never find that home again after you all go your separate ways. Either way, you’ll start to feel incomplete.
5. Making a home in yourself is challenging, but so vital to survival. Somewhere along the way, though, you will have to climb into a corner of your heart and set up camp when everything else is unfamiliar.
6. Every goodbye is filled with hellos, and every hello is filled with goodbyes. They can’t exist without the other and you’ll never feel emotionally equal with the people you are leaving behind because where they are lost, others are gained. But the people you leave behind don’t realize that when you return, they will be the ones filling in the caverns after a different goodbye.
7. You learn what you need to make your own space. You become a vagabond in your own earth, and you learn what your core needs to stay alive.
8. Eventually, you may stop crying outside, but you will never stop feeling tears dripping thorough your veins or the nervous lightning in your stomach when you haven’t planned your return.
9. You will always be missing something. The world exists and moves on whether you are there to witness it or not. If you’re constantly worrying about the things you’re missing, it won’t change the fact that you’re missing them and you’ll be missing what’s right in front of you. So focus on the life you’re in; at least that’s one thing you know you won’t miss.
10. Let yourself feel homesick and let yourself feel nostalgic, as long as you don’t let those feelings consume you. The moment you are homesick or you are nostalgic, you’ve let go of your present fortunes.