We, all of us, ask ourselves questions. Big questions – about who we are, and why we are who we are, and how we feel about that. This self-questioning goes on for years on the same topics. Sometimes the answers change from year to year, decade to decade (once you have enough decades under your belt).
We can make ourselves crazy looking for answers, for a definition of self. Answers to why we feel the way we feel and more disturbingly why we don’t feel the way we think we ought to. Or rather, the way we have been told we ought to feel.
Perhaps we are spending too much time thinking and re-thinking. Perhaps the first thought, the first answer that came to us was the right answer all long. Our true answer.
Today Rory posed these questions: “What animals do you feel a special connection with and why?” and “If you were able to allocate an animal mascot to each of the rooms of your house which rooms would you give them and again, why?” These were the end point of his post concerning his new home and that, among other things, that he is naming each of the rooms and spaces in his new home and assigning each space a personality via a mascot. I find that whole idea charming and fanciful and totally UN-relatable.
I quickly reacted to the post and questions and in re-reading both the post and my answer I realize I completely misunderstood what he was asking. I answered with MY concept of ‘home’.
Now then, through the years I have pondered on the concept of ‘home’ and belonging somewhere. I have written about it – a lot. The vagaries of life have had me moving often and in each instance I had to establish myself in the new place bearing the weight of outsider. Oh yes, I was always an outsider, in some places people thought me quite exotic.
A few years ago I finally, and with great peace of mind, discovered that life had given me the ability to be at home wherever I was, and to belong wherever that home was. Wherever I hung my hat was home! Wherever home was, I belonged.
Home is not a building. A building is an inanimate object with only the qualities that someone assigns to it as their imagination dictates. It can be beautiful to look at and a marvel of human skill and ingenuity but for me, a building is a convenience and I do prefer to occupy buildings that are particularly convenient for me. The space I occupy, reflects, for the most part, my personality. And when I and my things are removed and replaced, it will become a reflection of someone else’s personality.
My comment on Rory’s post just poured through my fingers to the keyboard. Instantaneous. And that first thought is my truest feelings –
“I’ve learned that everything thing I need, especially a ‘home’ is within me and I carry it with me – I don’t inhabit it, it inhabits me.”
And there is MY truth. I didn’t answer Rory’s questions but I answered mine!