Friday, April 19, 2013

The ideology of a 'home' and being nomadic.

I've gotten to thinking about the mythology of being 'at home' somewhere, calling a place 'home' and ideas of places that can be a 'home'.

First I'll say that my upbringing was less traditional; certain events meant that my family was always moving. We never stayed still for long, we lived in countless rentals; I attended three primary schools and two secondary schools. We weren't still long enough for me to associate a certain building as my home. Not that I'm complaining, but at the same time I hear about people who have lived in the one house all their life and my mind can't wrap my head around it.


The biggest move was from Melbourne to Mildura. This lasted a couple of years for me, and we moved away from familiar faces and relatives. I'll admit that while it's a nice little town, it just didn't feel like a home to me. No offence meant to any friends of mine from Mildura reading this, but I grew up a city girl and that wasn't going to change.


Another significant move was when I graduated high school, got accepted to Deakin and moved back to Melbourne for university - solo. I was working out how to make a home for myself - cooking, cleaning, working, studying. Constantly checking my bank account and looking at grocery receipts. Being back in a familiar place like Melbourne helped, and I had relatives nearby that provided the family element that I was lacking.

However, I learned the hard way that it wasn't healthy to be so dependent on family - or other people - and that I had to live for myself and form my own path. I took a bit of time to figure out who I was with less outside influence, and waiting on people part-time taught me a lot more than I realised about people and life.

Being accepted for exchange in Sweden has been another rattle in my idea of home - but not necessarily in a bad way. I consider Örebro yet another home because it's bared witness to another burst of growth and maturity that would never have happened otherwise. I've made so many friends from all corners of the world and I've experienced and seen so much already. I may be near broke when I return to Melbourne; but I have no regrets.

Notice that last sentence? I said return to Melbourne, and not home.

Perhaps this way of thinking has occurred from a less than stable way of life, but I have no regrets about that either. It's forced a new perspective on me and I've learned to accept that it's made me who I am and it's gotten me to this point. Me, Michelle - quirky, nice, strange, approachable... and nomadic.

...I mean, I'm writing this from Örebro, Sweden.

Even as a city girl in a place such as Melbourne, it's been enough to help me navigate Metro and big cities in Europe. Travelling and coming across seemingly impossible roads to cross makes me, out of habit, look for subways and other ways to cross.

This habit of mine was important in figuring out how to access the Arc de Triomphe in Paris!

I'm even nomadic with my friendship groups; I tend to bounce around different groups and make sure to catch up with everyone. That hasn't even changed in Sweden, there always seems for there for somebody to talk to.

We're dealt with the hand of life, and it's all about how you handle it as a person and how much you can let it affect your daily life. There's the pain, but there's also the joy. I live with the pain and ghosts of my past, but it helps me find the joy in everything else.

I hope this has given some insight as to who I am, and settled any misconceptions.

No comments:

Post a Comment