OK. This isn’t the ideal situation for me. I’m still pretty new at this writing thing. Or would you call it blogging? Regardless, I call it typing what I’m thinking.
I’m crammed in a germ-infested space with 200 other people and the coffee is served in a Dixie cup. Can you guess where I am? Here’s another hint: I’m 30,000 feet in the air in a big piece of steel that somehow gets from point A to B (seriously, it baffles me). I’m in a plane and I’m heading to Chicago! Granted, meetings will take up most of my time while there, but I’m still extremely excited to be going home.
So, this past week has been extremely busy and usually I try to get my writing done by Wednesday morning. This week, I figured since I’ll be flying for a solid three hours, I can use that time to write. About an hour into the flight I was still trying to figure out what to write about. Then, it hit me. I’m going home. This is amazing! I love going home. And then I thought more about what home means to me. Why do I feel so happy to be going home? Does everyone feel this way when they’re going home? Hmm…maybe I should run this by someone to see if writing about what “home” means to me is worthwhile.
So, I decided to run this week’s topic, home, by a friend. I’m going to keep her name out of this because I’m not sure she can handle — dare I say — the embarrassment. And I also need a ride back from the airport when I fly back into L.A.
I hopped on Facebook and messaged my friend (thank God for wifi on planes). “So, I think I’m going to write about what going home means to me. Thoughts? Do you feel me?”
Her response: “I don’t feel you. You need to generalize it. Maybe do one on Chicago, one on home and one on the feelings you have when going home?”
Me: “Generalize it? Well, Chicago is awesome to me because it is home, silly.”
Her: “Don’t make it all about you. Have it more broad so people can relate.”
Me: “People can’t relate to what home means to them?”
Her: …oh wait, she never responded.
Here’s the things, folks: I am doing this for me, but I hope it can help you too. I’m a regular guy and I’m pretty confident the majority of you can relate to what I write about. So, I’m going for it. I’m continuing to think about what home really means to me and by the end of this I hope to come up with one word that truly defines my home.
When I turned 18, I decided it was time to leave home. I headed out to Las Vegas for college and home quickly took on a different meaning. Until you actually leave home, you probably don’t realize how much it means to you. I describe it like a relationship: The relationship ends and then you’re sitting there thinking, “Wow, that person really was great. Why did it take losing them to realize this?” Do you guys feel me? You don’t know how good something is until you don’t have it anymore.
I’m one of the lucky ones. For me, my memories of home are unbelievably great and I jump at every opportunity I get to go home. I love seeing family, friends, my dog, etc. Even the little things excite me like the conversation I look forward to — or dread — with my father when he picks me up from the airport, sleeping in my childhood room and reminiscing about all the good times and eating mom’s home cooked meals. It just doesn’t get any better. Seeing my friends I’ve had for practically my whole life is also great — not many can say they still have a group of friends from the fourth grade. I feel safe; I feel like a kid again.
Despite all the good memories, bad memories come to mind as well. Family and friends I’ve lost way too early, the realization that home isn’t quite what it used to be, the feeling of aging, etc. Like I said before, I am extremely lucky to have been raised well and to have the luxury of being able to look forward to going home. I do understand for some people going home may not be an option.
Home is Mom, Dad, Renee, Teresa — or, simply put, family and friends. I miss it. If I were to sit here and tell you that I love Chicago and give you any other reason than it being my home, then I’d be lying. If I were born in any other city, it wouldn’t matter. Home is where I was raised, where my family lives, where my friends are and where my heart will always be. That is why I love Chicago. Chicago is my home.
So my one word to describe home is security. Remember when you were little and you had no worries in the world? Maybe, maybe not. But I sure do. I always felt safe at home. I felt secure. Everything that home means to me brings me a sense of security. I’m thankful for that every single day.
Here’s to going home and here’s to one day creating that home for someone else.
Here’s to the Chicago Cubs, for making home even that much better this year. And to my good friends Garrett and Morgan who will be getting married this weekend.
I love HOME.
If you have any questions, feel free to ask me by filling out the form below.
Be sure to check back next week for more of Chris’ answers right here on RantNOW.