Day 22: Where Is Home?

How did it go?

Today has been full of small positives to celebrate.

For example, my article on week 2 of my challenge was posted today on Odyssey. Even if you read my blog, take a look at how I connect a theme to my experiences throughout the week.

My first article with Medium was posted two days ago. If you love dogs and want to know how you can save a dog’s life, I think you’ll find it pretty informative. I was excited to see that people (besides my mother) liked and recommended it today.

I’m finding I’m very excited to tell people I am trying to get my content out there. I know you’re thinking of course you’re excited, it’s your work! But it’s the first time I’ve actually taken any steps to write for an audience (apart from this blog), to be published. It’s exciting. The look on my dad’s face is also a little funny. Don’t get me wrong; he supports me, and he’s happy that I am excited. But he’s also the one who, when I switched my bachelor’s degree from Biology to English, said, “can you find a job with that?” He’s just a dad—concerned about my wellbeing and making sure I can support whatever my future may hold.

Between waiting to get my bag once I got off the plane, the hour drive back, and then getting ready for bed (plus that random I’m-not-really-tired feeling I sometimes have after flying), I didn’t get into bed until about 2 a.m. So, because of travelling and my late landing yesterday, I got to work from home today, which meant having Belle by my side all day. And that was probably the most positive thing about today.

What did I learn?

Aside from the fact that I still get anxiety from flying, I realized I don’t get any sort of thrill out of it unless I get to share it with someone. Since I’ve wanted to just be alone, even at times I’ve felt like I want to be around people, that realization surprised me.

But I also realized I don’t really feel like I have a home right now, and that maybe that is where some of my negativity stems from.

I am so grateful to my mom for allowing me to stay in her place while I figure things out, but it’s not my home. It’s not even where I grew up. The “comforts” are different, the atmosphere is different. I’ve just often felt more lost than at home.

I also miss my friends from California. Yes, of course, I have friends from Colorado and Arizona that I am close to, that I love and miss. But there are no friends likes your friends from home.

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The picture perfectly describes how I feel about those friends in particular, but also about the 5 or 6 friends I still keep in contact with.

Going back to California, which is home since I grew up there, hit me like a ton of bricks. Every place I passed had some memory attached to it, good and bad, and each of those experiences has helped make me who I am. The place my husband and I went to on our first date, a salad bar (hey, we were in junior college and didn’t have any money!), is no longer there. Everything that was so familiar to me seemed even slightly different. And, of course, being with my dad was emotional, because he’s my daddy—enough said.

What hurt the most, though, for the first time in a long time, was that I couldn’t remember how to get anywhere because I haven’t lived there in 6 years.

Every time we would go back to visit, my husband would laugh good-naturedly about my terrible sense of direction and how he couldn’t believe I couldn’t remember the roads. Before, that didn’t bother me; he had lived in one location his whole life, whereas I hadn’t. I had had to learn new ways to get places once my parents separated, so it was natural I would get confused. This time, though, as I drove around with my dad (or on my own, with navigation), it broke my heart.

And I began to think maybe that was home after all.

Weaving that experience into positivity, I take it as a learning opportunity. I now know a little more about what makes me tick, about where my true priorities are: family. I fought for so long to move away from home, get a job, live my own life. But I see now that doesn’t necessarily lead to happiness. And maybe I thought I was ready to leave before I really was.

I don’t know what will happen next or what the future holds. I have to put my faith in God for that. But I know a little more about me now. And that’s the beauty of this positivity challenge—learning more about myself. Because I can’t learn about myself and be negative.

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