an excerpt from I am this Woman…I am that home.
They say home is where the heart is, but, to be honest, I have been struggling with that phrase all of my life…
I have had many dwellings, in many countries, each one has been unique and was the space necessary for that period.
I was born and raised in British Columbia, Canada. Brought into this world in a little town called Salmon Arm. Born to young parents who divorced by my first birthday, I then had required two spaces. My Mother’s and my Father’s….
I discovered that although these were where my parents lived, they hadn’t included me in their environments, not on any reliable level. Just as the little girl who went to her Dad’s for the summer or her Mother’s for the school year. I may not be to quick on the uptake sometimes, but it did eventually rock home to me that whenever I drove into my Father’s ranch, the names of all my brothers and stepmother were on a sign by the edge of the driveway. My name never made the list….even when my youngest brother (RIP) was born, his name was put on with additional chains and proudly presented. Lisa never made the cut.
Over the years I stacked up 13 schools, one of them was even for the mentally challenged and blind, to this day I can sign the alphabet…so all things considering I learnt from each experience. My Mother moved what seemed like every two years, for whatever her reasons were, I still to this day can’t say which place was my childhood home. But through that I became adaptable, needing to survive in any situation that came my way…I was always the new kid on the block.
My graduating year my Mother entered me in a beauty pageant… I won. Every weekend I was away, and I was cool with that, as that was exactly how my life was any way. Packed, in a bag, waiting to head out.
I moved to Australia by the age of 24 and started a family. This was a family home that had many lives in it. All of my children were brought up here, Christmas, Birthdays Primary school, and then the fire. A 13-year-old boy one night decided to randomly pick my kids’s home and light it a flame. …that burnt everything I had collected within those 15 years of calling it my ‘home’ to the ground in 7 minutes. Those pictures that I had collected of the kids, art, children’s toy’s and their pets…all gone .
So it got me to thinking as I roam the earth over the past four years as a person with No Fixed Abode. I have travelled 3 Continents, lived in 11 countries and seen more of airports than most do in a lifetime. This, by the way, is not a complaint in fact the very opposite.
‘My home has always been within me.’
I am that home….
On first foot into my home, you would enter into an environment quite sterile, clinical and verging on OCD cleanliness. Please don’t feel awkward that you are the first to see this, as once inside my home you might be shown more than just the front landing.
After a few more visits, my door will open a little wider and as I invite you in you will start to notice slight changes, some subtleties that on your first visit were not there. Maybe a hint of color catches your eye or the smell of my favorite fragrance or even something yummy cooking on the stovetop. Enter into my home and cast your eyes down my hallway, what once looked to you like a cold and long descent, slowly starts to fill with pictures and art that I made myself and proudly placed on my walls. As you entered into the first room you might have felt at a Doctor’s office but wait on a little longer and you will start to notice the collections of my travels and the knicknacks that meant enough to me to pack across the globe.
Oh, please don’t open that door. That room has been locked for awhile, in there is pain and it has been dealt with for now. My home has it all, a room for pain, for laughter, but especially for love. This is my home, and my home is my heart and so I decorate it accordingly. You might not like my layout; that’s ok you probably only got to the front door. For those that have seen the colour and embraced the atmosphere, I hope you enjoyed my hospitatlity because I wanted you to see my house.
I am that home where the hearts of the people I have loved and embraced along the way decorate my halls and fill the pantry with the song, wine and laughter…they are my home, and I am there’s…one needn’t always a roof or a hanging picture to prove that you are home when hearts touch hearts and eyes lock.
I am that home….