Where is your home?
My family comes from Slovenia. I spent my years in education in both, Slovenia and London. I visit my dentist and my doctor in Slovenia. My best friends and soulmates are in London. I get homesick for London. And I currently live in Madrid.
But where is my home? It’s one of the questions I always dread to answer as the actual response is quite complicated. The eye roll inducing saying, “home is where your heart is,” immediately comes to mind.
Some may define home by their social or marital status or they may consider it the place they feel most comfortable. In some cases, people connect home to their heritage and loved ones.
When living out of the suitcase, the idea of home often becomes more abstract than physical. Especially if your true home is something you cannot return to. My heart always felt strangely connected to some cities that I have never visited before: Valencia, London, Rome, Santorini, Madrid, Barcelona. It’s like a piece of a horcrux has been placed in each of those places. For non Harry Potter fans, a horcrux is a part of your soul. But unlike You-Know-Who, I don’t wish to attain immortality, I simply wish to find my place in the world.
Is there a definition?
A good friend once told me that she likes the idea of having a base – a place you can return to when things go wrong, or they don’t work out and where you feel safe. My co-worker differentiates between Madrid as his “physical home” and Switzerland, his native country, as his “spiritual home”. My ex flatmate has a similar definition – London is her spiritual home, but Thailand is where she feels her identity originates.
I’d like to think of my home as the entire world. Not limiting myself to anything. The excitement when flying back to my birth place usually dies down within a few days and I find myself longing to go back home. I was born in Slovenia but ‘going home’ means going to London.
I do know one thing – as long as “home” is a place where I can comfortably lay my head on my pillow, lay my thoughts to rest and where I feel safe and loved, then quite frankly, it can be just about anywhere.
The Just Landed team on “Where is your home?”
“This is maybe not the conventional answer for an expat, but I can’t help but think my home is where my parents live, my house in Bedford. My dad was in the Royal Air Force, so I spent the first 5 years of my life moving all over the place – I was actually born in Germany. Bedford was the first place we really settled. I imagine that sleepy town will continue to be my home until I start my own family. Until then, I’m very content to explore the world (and that’s my plan) – but my home is the UK, with all it’s sarcasm and rain – that’s where my heart belongs.” – Amy Flippant, UK.
“So for me my ‘home’ is where my head is and where my friends are. Holland will always be my first ‘home’ just due to the fact that I am Dutch. However, I can adapt to a new environment easily even more so when I am surrounded by nice people.” – Lara Stok, the Netherlands.
“Home to me, is where I feel that I will belong at all times, which is not only one place. Belonging is for me both a reference to the past, the present and even the future; where I come from, where I am now, and where I want to go. Ultimately this very much depends on the people (and pets) I share my life with.” – Johannes Musaeus, Denmark.
“It’s funny because I realised recently that when I leave Luzern, I say and I think that now I am “going home”, i.e. back to Madrid – so depending on where I am in the world, my “home” changes. Generally I feel that my physical home is Madrid – but mentally I still feel very Swiss and in that sense I would say my spiritual home is at least 55% Switzerland.” – Oliver Küng, Switzerland.
“Settling down, for me, means that I have found my place in the world where I feel happy, loved, comfortable and confident. My home will be where my heart will be but I have a feeling that it will take some years because at the moment I’m a wandering soul, not yet ready to settle.” – Kerti Suur, Estonia.
Where is YOUR home?