15 September 2009

On Finding Where I Belong...

Truth be told, I like D.C.  I really do.  I'm glad I moved here.  It has been home to so many firsts for me.  First city livin' experience.  First time living alone.  First time since 16 that I didn't have a car.  First time dancing until 5 AM.  First time eating so many different foods.  First "I don't have a clue where the hell I am" moment.  So many, many firsts happened here.  


My favorite monument during Cherry Blossom time.


That said, I don't love D.C.  I really don't.  I'm glad I moved here, but I'll be gladder to move on when the time is right.  But I knew that coming in -- I'd stay, live, like D.C. for a while, but that eventually, I'd need to say goodbye and find "home."


I've stayed in D.C. far longer than I ever thought I would when I first moved here.  I'll be here for a while longer still.  I give directions in my neighborhood without a second thought on a daily basis.  I am an embarrassed regular at more than a few local restaurants.  I know which stores offer the best of anything at the best prices.  I know which bars and clubs to visit for a crowded dance floor or just a laid-back drink and a chat with the bartender.


I live here.  I work here.  I laugh here.  But I do not love here.   My family is still in Michigan.  My Love is on the other side of the world. With the exception of a few good D.C. friends, most of my closest friends are scattered around the world.  And truth be told, without love, there is no "home."  Without love, my cozy apartment is just four walls filled with things.


Scenes from a backseat window in Michigan.


When I was back in Michigan, I felt comfortable.  And more relaxed than I have in a long, long time.  I was with family.  Surrounded by laughter and love and all the places I grew up with.  But truth be told, Michigan wasn't "home" either.  I have known for a while now that I've outgrown Michigan.  My dreams, my goals, my ambitions are too big for the town I grew up in.  Even love and familiarity do not make "home,"  although it is much more "home" like than D.C. has ever felt.


So I don't belong in this city all by myself.  And I don't belong in the quiet suburban comfort of Michigan with family.  So where is "home" for me?  How do I find it?  How do I get there from hereAnd how do I recognize it when I get there Anyone else ever feel that way?  How do I stop wandering and wondering and chasing dreams, and recognize when I am "home?"

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