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Coming Home: What Does it Even Mean?

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Coming Home: What Does it Even Mean?


the leasing office employee will hand it to me with my
keys. she will congratulate me on it and I will smile and
say thank you while looking it over to take in every
corner. I imagine it’s a perfect square wrapped in soft pink
paper, each crease so neat. I’ll open it when I get to my new
apartment, of course. this is a private feeling that I need to
explore on my own. I walk with a smile on my face and everyone
who sees me in the neighborhood sees my box and waves
to me in excitement. I get to my new place and reach my living room.
there I rip off the paper, open the box and find sitting in the bottom
the feeling I’ve been chasing for so many years. it will stare back
at me as if it had been there all along and when I grasp it, I’ll know.

I’m home.

-Star LaBranche, Wake Me When It’s Over

I’ve been chasing the feeling of home for years. For so long I’ve thought “home” was just moving up the property ladder. I.E. I will feel at home once I get my own apartment, I will feel at home once I get my own house, I will feel at home once I’m part of a huge real estate purchase. Does home just equal spending more money? My conditioned response is “no.” But my first conditioned response was “yes.”

Coming Home: What Does it Even Mean?

When you think about it, there are plenty of people who feel at home in small, cozy apartments and plenty still who feel out of place in sweeping mansions. Home doesn’t have a price tag and more importantly than what it’s worth, or how I might find it, what exactly is it?

What makes someone feel at home? What qualifies as home and is this a universal feeling? Can you literally purchase this piece of mind or is it something more complicated than a mortgage?

I think the bottom line is, and always has been, there is no magic in finding a place that feels like home. It means something different to everyone and everyone has to find their own way there. Maybe the new home, which I have named Bonbonribbon, will have this feeling that I’ve been lacking. Or maybe it will be the people, not the place, that make me finally feel at home.

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