Channel your inner Edward Sharp, people.
What does home mean for you? Is it hearing your kids run down the stairs in the morning? Or watching your dog wag and greet you excitedly as you open your door? Perhaps you find home with another person, or a moment of solitude. Maybe home is "where you park it"… or it could be something totally different.
I had one ‘home’ growing up. I never moved and I never thought much about what the word meant. During and after college I lived in many homes and had a pretty vast array of ideas of what home meant for me. I used to think it meant to have everything in it’s place, only then I felt home. I used to think it meant having a plan. I thought 'home' was the final sign that you were a grown up and there was probably a picket fence in that vision too.
To give you an idea of what I mean, here are a few things I definitely DID NOT think “home” was or ever would be :
- a backpack
- a foreign country
- living almost 4,000 miles from my family and friends
Speaking of family and friends, there is a definite element of home and safety anywhere you have your tribe. This cocoon of familiarity can make any place feel like it’s yours, but as any traveler knows, you can have a hundreds of families in hundreds of places, it’s up to you to create it. I’ve come to realize that I don’t need a thousand friends -just a few will do- but community is an important part of feeling in your element. I met my Little Corn family pretty quickly and, yes, they make this place feel like I belong. (Hi Pinto! Hi Romain! What’s up Lighthouse and FUNK Yoga!) I feel grateful to have not only my supportive family back home in Connecticut, but also “Kula”, as we say in Sanskrit, speckled all over the states and now the world.
I used to feel uneasy when I was out of my comfort space and away from my people, but now I know it’s possible to make new connections wherever I go. If you’re in a place for only a little while, it can still be done! Taking a yoga class is a great way to meet people, join a group activity or just give someone a compliment. The desire for connection is universal. We all want to see and be seen. We’re in this together.
I think it’s necessary to have ways to find ‘home’ both with others and on your own. So, the first is a great tool, however, not always what we’re looking for in the moment.
So, my go to way to get grounded no matter what?
I just returned back from the US and Europe, where we were moving location every few days 6 weeks. In Ayurveda, Dinacharya, means daily routine. It's a huge stabilizer for me to find a foundation even in a place I don't know. If I can roll out my mat, ( honestly, when I'm traveling I do my practice straight on the floor) or take a few moments to sit by myself, I’m home. Sometimes it’s a run before anyone else is awake. Sometimes it’s a cup of coffee and a few pages of my book. Truthfully, I don’t think it matters too much what it is, but it's gift to yourself. It is self care. 'Home' to me is feeling rooted in my body and ready to tackle all my thoughts and tasks for the day. Creating this space for myself is essential.
It’s easy to bring a sense of familiarity wherever you are if you have a common thread each day. Something to seek refuge in, to turn to. To feel at home, you’ve got to have your base needs met (have your root chakra balanced if you’re into that kind of thing) So yes, food, water, shelter, but maybe a couple of other things too… what are yours? These are mine.
The things that make you feel at home are personal. Sometimes its music, other’s silence. It might be catching up on the news while you’re in the bathroom, I don’t know, but I recommend that you find out. Because when you can feel at home wherever you are, the world opens up, opportunities become endless, and you’ll always be free and at ease.