Home Sweet Home

Nearly every time I go to visit Southern California I have the most difficult time coming back. This was true even before Jordan died. I adore Southern California, the heat, the landscape, the familiarity, no matter how much it changes. I think there’s a simple explanation for this; California is in my blood. It’s home, even though my parents don’t live there any more. It’s where I was a kid, where I was innocent and where I learned about life and the world. I don’t think this is something that is isolated to just California.

I believe that if a person is born and raised for the majority of their life somewhere they are always going to have ties to it. Whether it’s through family, friends, or simply an attachment in the heart. Whenever your “home” is mentioned your mind drifts off for a moment as you think about your life there. You think of the people you knew, mistakes you made, moments of happiness and how you so desperately wanted to get out!

That is what makes me smile the most about this home sweet home thing. Some of us try so hard to leave and once we’re finally out for good it seems all we want to do is go back, again and again. The more we go back the harder it is to pull ourselves away. Is it because of the feelings of comfort that come from being home? Is it because when we see our friends from childhood we can act like kids again; be totally irresponsible and know that we won’t be judged?

It makes a person feel a bit divided, not that one of you is real and one is not. Maybe it just means you’re more honest in one place and more guarded in another. Maybe it’s not that drastic even, things are just different at home. I feel different when I’m in California, even when I bring Jack with me. I’m still myself, still Jack’s mom, but there’s something about me or in me that relaxes in California.

This is probably not true for everyone. Perhaps someone left home and really found them self out on the road or in a completely different city. Maybe going home is an obligation for them. But I know that for many people “home” is always calling their name. My mother talked about going back to Oregon for most of my life. She finally got to return about twoish years ago. She admits she does miss her friends in the desert but would never go back.

I have a sneaking suspicion that no matter where I go, I’m going to end up in California again, possibly even the desert itself. I don’t know how I know this or when it’s going to happen. But I’m pretty certain it will, because deep in my heart I am infected with the desert, it’s in my blood and you can’t deny blood.

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