When you travel like we do and are constantly meeting new people, the first question everyone asks us: Where are we from? or where’s home?
How do we answer this??!?! Honestly, it’s a question we really don’t like and struggle to answer. The world is hung up on where we are from or where is home.
Yet, in reality what does it matter? Yes, there are influences such as language, religion, family, food and comforts of home. But in the end, it really doesn’t matter where we are from. It’s more important to know what home means to us.
Sometimes we say Denver (from where we sold our sticks and bricks home and started our RV journey). Sometimes we say “Yes. We’re from Florida.” (Our license plates show this as our “home,” so it can be easier to go with the flow.) Other times, we say we live in an RV. We are at home. That opens up a whole can of worms and usually a longer conversation.
Everyone has a story. It includes where one grew up, family background and all the other influences of what got someone to a particular place. It’s interesting to hear different stories as we travel and to learn of the reasons for RV living. Some aren’t traveling at all. They are simply living in an RV for whatever reasons important to them. Others travel to see the country, to experience new things, to visit family all over, to work short term jobs, to chase the warm weather and I’m sure a multitude of other reasons. However, what does home mean?
What’s home? What does it even mean to be home? Is home where you physically have a house? Is home where you grew up?
I felt at home in my parent’s house. It was my home for many years. Then I moved out on my own. I created a home of my own with friends. However, there was still something special about going “home” to visit my parents. Then the family home was sold and now it lives only my memory.
That’s when I realized what made that house feel like a home to me. It was the family inside it. The memories. The snow days. The summer BBQs. The holidays celebrated there. The garden.
When I visit my mother now, it is simply her home. I definitely feel like a visitor there and not “home.”
Paul is the same way. The family “home” was sold and his parents have a new place. We visit and it’s comfortable, but it’s not “home.”
Home is where I’m with you
Now when I think of home, I think of the people in it and not the physical structure.
Right as we started on this journey I bought Paul a kitchen towel for our anniversary present. Ok. Not the most romantic present out there, but it was the sentiment that I loved it. “Home is where I am with you” is written on it. I felt it was perfect as we started a new chapter in our lives together.
Home is about the people you love being a part of your life. You make a house a home with loved ones and maybe friends. A house isn’t a home without the love and memories shared there, right?
So in the end our home is wherever we are together. It’s not a particular place, town, or city. If you think of home in this way, you are always at home when in the presence of loved ones. Am I wrong?
It’s the people in our lives that make it special. They bring us comfort in times of need. They celebrate success with us! These people in our lives enrich us and inspire us. They might make us sad or angry at times, but that’s part of it. They share in our lives and they are what create a “home.”
So in the end I realize it’s the people that we need to treasure in our lives, not possessions. People make a home. A house does not itself constitute a home. So make your home special and fill it with love and joy. Surround your life with great people and you, too, will feel at home.