There is a line from a song I love very much that goes as follows:
Just know you’re not alone, Cause I’m gonna make this place your home.
For a long time that song was my war cry. I shouted it to my reflection until it finally sunk in; that though trouble it might drag you down, if you get lost, you can always be found. It was the song I ran to, danced to, cried to through the pain of rejection, the confusion of decision making and the hurt of judgement. And it was the song that, still to this day, sums up how I feel about the idea of home.
I started writing this post a few days ago when I was still in Perth with my family and friends; but I left it; not sure if I meant what I had written or if maybe I had changed my mind on the issue. But now I’m back in Sydney and am ready to post this entry.
I spent five weeks in Perth. Can you believe that?
That’s a long time! It’s almost unbelievable that I lasted so long. Why you ask.
Well let me explain. I mean please don’t think I hated the trip or anything.
Going back to Perth is not what I would call exciting. It’s not relaxing or relieving or anything how the movies make homecomings seem. There are no dramatic airport reunions, no Welcome Home dinners or surprise visits from friends. In fact, deciding whether to go or not was hard, almost impossible of a task. I don’t know if anyone else has this problem when they move away but for me its been easier to stay away, feel alone and miss everyone than it has been to go home and feel, well, alone around everyone.
Home by Phillip Phillips, the song quoted above, used to mean so much to me because I never felt at home in Perth. I always felt out of the loop and out of place and in an attempt to change that, I sang that song over my life as if it was a promise that one day all would be well. That one day I’ll find my home. But isn’t home supposed to be where your heart is?
And shouldn’t your heart be with the people you love?
So why is it that my home was never Perth? Or New Zealand where I was born?
Or even now, in Sydney?
So many people back in Perth asked me if I’ll move back there after College finishes and I never knew how to answer them. I do love Western Australia, it is an amazing state. And I love my family, I love my friends and I love my church but its all so different now.
I can’t move back. Does anyone else feel that way?
That to move back would be to move backwards?
I don’t want to go backwards, I want to move forward.
Call me silly if you must but that’s how I feel. I can just see it happening. I would struggle to live in my parents house but probably wouldn’t be able to afford a place by myself for a while. And I mean none of my friends there have places of their own that I could move into. I would struggle to find a good job and spend most of my time trying to lose myself in the worlds of books just like I did before. I would dream of bigger, greater places and all the possible lives I could be living.
I would have nothing but memories of the things I did, the people I met and the places I travelled. I would still be single, I would probably become a back seat church goer and I would have nothing but regret for the decision to come home. Fact.
But another side to it all is that I can’t help but feel bad for wanting to move on and up. All I ever wanted was out of Perth; I wanted out because I wasn’t happy there and I thought that if I could only go somewhere new I may be happier. In part that makes sense and we should never tell someone with a travel bug that happiness will not be found in the mountains or on the open ocean but the fact is that the grass is greener on the side of the fence where you water it.
And if that is so, I must not have watered Perth well enough because it was always dry. Believe me i tried but it just felt easier to pack a bag and leave for a new field.
I have found happiness here in Sydney but, unfortunately, the problem of finding my home is still at hand. And I hate it. I’m watering this side of the fence, I am. But I want to at least see what’s on the other side. And I feel that I may sadly always feel this way.
I know I have a crazily overactive imagination and I know I think far too deeply about things but I haven’t been able to help but feel bad for always dreaming of bigger and better possibilities. I’m talking about going against families plans or wishes; I mean that I can’t help but feel like I’m going against God’s wishes and ‘His Will for my life’ by me dreaming and by me never feeling satisfied.
Sounds dreary right? Well, it was…but stay with me because there is a bright side to all this.
You see, as hard as it has been for me over the last year, working out the personal meaning of the word home, I have realized a lot of helpful truths about myself. When I moved to study at college, here in Sydney, I was making more than a decision; I was committing to follow Jesus to a degree I had previously struggled to grasp the possibility of. And in doing so I had to leave behind everything; home, family and myself included. But I did it and now that I am committed to doing so I need to unapologetically move forward. I have to stop feeling bad and stop viewing my moving on as me leaving others behind.
I want you reading this to never feel sorry for wanting, for dreaming, for wishing because He wants you to have all the desires of your heart. Simply promise to try, with everything you have.
I have learned that God’s Will is not a destination nor is it a straight path. But keep your eyes on the prize and run for the win. I start my second year of college in just over a week now and as I post this I’m publicly committing to believe that there is no such thing as impossible and that I can do all things through Christ. I’m moving on and not turning back because I have decided to follow Jesus. I’m gonna trust that I’m never alone. I’m gonna make this place my home.