When tough situations come along, it always makes me re-think many of my major decisions. One big change can leave me vulnerable to options and questions that hadn't really occurred to me before.
Because of this and an emotional week, a conversation I recently had with a very smart man has stuck with me. It's the idea of home: what is 'home'?
I was born and raised in St. Catharines, and moved to Toronto in 2008. Since I first moved, home has taken on many forms. Lifestyles and situations have come and gone, things have ebbed and flowed. For me, home is more of a feeling than an actual location - often the result of people, not places.
Right now, in this apartment, it does not feel like home. I don't know that it ever has. This March I'll have been here for 2 years, and yet I haven't bothered to paint or truly put my personality into my own space. It's not a reflection of me. It's where I live, where I work, but my heart isn't in it.
Even now, when I refer to the house I grew up in back in St. Catharines, I call it home. But home is more of a reference to my parents, to family, and to the majority of my life having been lived there. My dog is another piece of home; likely the greatest comfort I have, and she's with me through everything. We are a package deal, always.
Relationships, significant others, also end up becoming home to me. Love, familiarity, bonds, comfort... that's my definition of home. And as those change, so does the feeling that I'm where I need to be.
So, at this point, anywhere could be home. Any city, any place; here or somewhere entirely new. But home is just not within these walls. I'm not sure where to start in order to figure out where I need or want to be - whether a small change or a big one will give me the result I'm looking for. So until I do, Toronto is still where I hang my hat. At least for now. But the options are starting to seem endless.
What constitutes 'home' for you?