Home. Where and what is it? For most of us, it’s a place we consider sacred and personal. Where we can unwind, and come back to people we love. It’s our safe place and permanent residence. Whatever it is to you or anyone, it’s a place of comfort.
That being said, the idea of not having a “home” can be stressful. Constant change and movement can really fatigue you. For others, being “out of your comfort zone” is your “comfort zone”.
Throughout my life, I’ve seen and experienced major and minor “home” changes whether is was the shifting of a couch or moving to another city. My mother frequently moved furniture around and renovated my childhood home over the years. I’ve lived outside of the home with my sister temporarily to help a family friend. I’ve stayed with my sister in Southern California for summers alone. I was traveling from school to home to my home away from home with my trusty Accord and my red suitcase in the trunk.
My surroundings shifted time after the other and I felt like I was always in a new scene. It’s just how things played out which has evidently shaped my adaptability and comfort range; I’m very thankful for it.
Now when I say “living out of my suitcase”, I mean it metaphorically of course; I’m settled somewhere for an indefinite amount of time. Being on my feet and having a destination was something I’ve come to admire and love. The feeling of packing, loading the car, and anticipating a long drive was and is relaxing. Over the years with plenty events to fill my books and perfecting my craft, I’ve become an expert at living out of my suitcase. In doing so, I’ve learned a lot of living a simple life and about my character.
When you’re on the road or jumping from place to place, you can’t haul your room with you. All the decor and pieces that you fill your room with essentially displays the essence of who you are. It won’t all fit in your car, sadly. But at this point, it’s unnecessary. They are great fillers for walls and empty spaces and making a house a home. But with the absence of those two, they don’t mean much. The essence of who you are is shown through how you portray yourself. You can’t bring the whole wardrobe with you either which for some of us girls, I know, it’s hard. My Ted Baker dress, my For Love & Lemons skirt are boxed away at my parent’s house, hundreds of miles away from me. To some extent, they too are unnecessary…for everyday life that is. Being away from a permanent home helps you understand what is a necessity and what is just for kicks. I’m not saying that clutter and luxury are garbage and we should throw it all away. They just aren’t necessities to have a great experience.
For a while, I was caught up in materialistic value. I felt like the quality of the things I owned, the brand names had some definition to my being. And when I had most of it stripped away, I oddly felt like some of my character had been left behind. I had to reevaluate who I was and in some ways restart. I learned how to be more of myself, a character that is rooted internally rather than from objects or even places.
When I first moved for work, I was disappointed at all the things I had to leave behind. Being away from it now, I’ve become aware of how many things I possessed that didn’t add much value to my life. The tangibles that I thought I needed were just wants. They are great to have, but they don’t define who I am or my status as a person. It a refreshing feeling being detached from all the material and focusing on what is immediately with and near me.
Like I said before, being in a new place isn’t always a walk in the park. You may be used to some standard of luxury or comfort. If you play it safe, then you won’t run into this problem often. But when you allow yourself to be vulnerable, you open doors to opportunities for experience.
When I say I like to travel, I don’t want restrict myself to simply transporting my body elsewhere in the world, sightseeing, eating the local delicacies, and calling it an experience. There’s nothing wrong with that, but it’s only one way to experience a culture or place. I want to roam the streets and enter the woods. Sometimes I want jump in my car, drive into the middle of nowhere, watch the stars, and wake up to the breeze. I want a raw experience that doesn’t come with a pamphlet or a yelp review.
Sometimes that means making sacrifices which in most cases is comfort. In the end, it’s your choice what you feel is worth compromising; but don’t let uncharted territories and change deter you from a good opportunity.
Eventually, my life will become more settled. I’m not ignorant to the fact that I’m only 21. While I can, I want to make the most out of my youth by taking unexpected journeys. Being on my own has helped me gain worldly experiences and has truly refined who I really am or aspire to be. Without a place to hide, without a home to let out your steam, are you still the same person?