"When I think of home... actually, I try not to..."
"I'm not sure that when you ask about HOME, you mean what I think of... my idea of HOME isn't comfortable. Actually, it's really traumatic."
"HOME could be a lot of things... what are you actually asking for?"
"Well, my definition of HOME probably isn't what you think."
|Pic from HOMEbody. Photo by Thomas Kay.|
In the research of HOMEbody, I honor all of these experiences and reflections of HOME.
I don't have any expectations except that everyone has a personal experience and their own definitions of HOME.
When I hear these statements, my reaction is to want to give the narrator a giant hug, hold them close, and say "I am here to witness and hear your experience of HOME, whatever that is." But I recognize that my embodied, very physical reaction is not always appropriate, especially when HOME has been physically traumatizing.
But, as we continue this process, I do want to say:
HOME is not always HOME-Y. The conflict between our expectations and our reality is sometimes very real.
HOME is not always comfortable or safe.
HOME can present illusions just as it can present grounded comfort.
HOME means different things to different people; all of those experiences are valid.
HOME is not necessarily permanent.
HOME can be a prism that reflects and refracts many different lights.
What does HOME mean to you?