Where the heart is? Well that doesn’t help me because my heart has been torn and tacked all over the globe. Little pieces plastered on the walls of Florence, Sarejevo and Fukuoka, cities I’ve fallen in love with. People have taken pieces with them, my host sister as she returned back to Japan, my Aunty living in Sydney and my best friend when she studied in England. My heart isn’t held in one place and neither it seems am I.
Where you grew up? Perth holds my childhood memories, my history. But I don’t miss it enough to be home. I miss the people, I miss them everyday, but Perth was my safe harbour. I was anchored to the place, stuck. Eventually sails get feed up of fluttering in the breeze. I needed to catch the trade winds, feel the roar of the fierce ocean and the gust of the billowing winds. It doesn’t matter how beautiful or protected the harbour is, if you stay there forever you never get to be challenged or thrilled. Never get to feel the rush of seeing a new shoreline.
Where you choose? Now I’m trying to make a home for myself in Sweden. I love running in the woods in Orebro, riding my bike to the castle and watching the leaves change to a resilient red. Yet you can’t create a home from sheer force of will. Can I find a job? Can I find enough people I click with? Can I enjoy the Winter? All of these aspects are somewhat out of my control and that’s scary. I don’t have a back up plan, and I don’t want to be a ship adrift, floating with no direction, lost.I guess this is when I need to have some faith and adopt the Aussie attitude of working hard on the things I can control and not stressing about the rest…’No worries’…’She’ll be right.’
Maybe my sense of home is scattered, maybe my heart is pulled in multiple directions, but just as I’ve left scraps of myself, I’ve also collected pieces along the way. The Aussie mentality, the values my grandparents installed in me, the love and sense of self belief my mum privileged me with, the running strategy my Father taught me, the sense of belonging and trust from my girlfriends, the laughs I’ve shared with fellow travellers, songs from my brother, the smiles from my little cousins. These things I pack with me no matter which course I steer or steers me. I might not have a home just yet, but maybe I don’t need one.
A home is where you feel familiar, safe, comfortable. Maybe I don’t need those things right now. Maybe I need to be overwhelmed by new experiences, launched into the unknown and opened up to different ideas. Maybe I need to be brave not safe. Once I’ve crammed in as many moments, pitfalls, adventures and emotions as I can, then I’ll have collected enough materials to settle down and build something worthwhile. A home that makes me WANT to stay at the shore, happily moored at the dock, appreciating the beauty of the sunset without wondering what’s beyond that horizon line…