I previously talked about going home, but now I want to talk about what home is.
When I first moved to Glasgow, I was shocked and scared. At the time I didn’t understand, but I was dealing with seasonal depression and understanding the difference between being alone and being lonely. I refused to call my flat in student accommodation, home. And maybe in hindsight, that was part of my struggle to adjust. Over time, I referred to that place as lil’ flat.
I grew to love lil’ flat. It became my home. I watched golden sunsets from lil’ flat. I watched trains roll by from lil’ flat. I had dinner with new friends in lil’ flat. I made that flat home. I fell in love with Glasgow and my life in lil’ flat.
And then I moved out.
It was awful, and I felt like my heart was splitting in two. I had to say goodbye to lil’ flat. My first real adult home. It shattered my heart.
I left Glasgow to work the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in August, and there I found a new home. I found home in people. I found my best friends. People who made me feel at home, whole and alive.
I rested my head on a bed in Edinburgh every night in a flat I shared with 12 people. But that wasn’t home.
My home was the people I spent 10 hours a day with, in a tiny office. My home was running through the streets of Edinburgh, drunk off pure happiness and a something deeper that I didn't fully understand. Laughing at the top of my lungs and racing to the next show. My home was getting day drunk with new friends as cheap wine, and warm sun heated my cheeks pink. My home was the feeling of seeing a show and falling in love, knowing the person next to me felt the same. My home was sneaking away to have a quick picnic in the park during shifts. My home was cheap Tesco beer on the steps of the National Museum of Scotland. My home was our faces pressed together from laughing at shows. My home was awful coffee and worse hangovers the next morning with my new friends.
My home was new friends who felt like coming home.
Home is people.
My home is my mother’s arms. My father’s full belly laugh. Home is my brother’s couch, more comfortable than any bed I’ve known. My home is terrible reception messaging my friend in China who knows how to make me smile on my worst days. Home is my friend making every plan to make it to my graduation so I won’t be alone.
Home is seeing friends after so many years apart. The simplicity of falling into each other again. Home is friends who understand and open their couches to you. Home is waking up to texts from friends miles and miles away. Home is the quietness shared with friends as you lay next to each other. Home is when a friend has kit kats ready for you after a long journey. Home is new friends in unfamiliar places, certain you must’ve met in another life.
Home is the people I meet on the road. Those who made me feel yes, I am choosing the right life. Home is the warmth of whisky rushing through my bloodstream as a new friend and I share tales of love lost on the road. Home is the friendly smile from the fellow traveler who understands the struggle of a pack.