What Is Home?

What Is Home?

Thank you again for the many caring messages following my mom’s death on August 30. I can’t tell you how much your words and experiences consoled me.

I went to South Louisiana this week to bring my mom home and bury her next to her husband, mother and father, and two brothers. She was the last living member of her immediate family.

Our 400-person town of Charenton, Louisiana, was my mom’s home. She lived within ten miles of where she was born until I brought her to Orlando five years ago.

Being back in South Louisiana caused me to think about the meaning of home. I spent time with my cousins Belinda, Harry, Roxanne, and Chad. I visited friends I worked with more than thirty years ago. I talked with many people who dearly loved my mom and reminded me of the woman she used to be before dementia took possession of her mind.

I toured my childhood home, the home my parents built with their own hands in six weeks when their landlord decided to do something else with his property.

My parents' home for sixty-three years in Charenton, Louisiana, where I spent my first eighteen years.

With my dad’s Alzheimer’s and my mom caring for him, the house fell into disrepair. I sold it in 2020, and the new owners completely renovated it. Seeing my parents’ pride and joy loved again brought tears to my eyes.

My dad’s beloved koi pond was still there, but white ducks cruised its surface instead of fish. The new owners had chickens similar to the ones that followed my dad around the yard like puppies. They also had a naughty goat named Herb, who ruled the backyard.

Only one of the two 800+-year-old oak trees still presided over the yard. I laughed as I remembered all my dad’s attempts to eliminate the armadillos living underground in the tree’s massive roots. These included water, smoke, tear gas, and even explosives. I have no doubt the armadillos are still there.

When I drove away from Charenton and boarded the plane in New Orleans, I knew I was coming home. I inherited my home in South Louisiana, but I created my home in Orlando.

Even though I own no property, my roots here run deep. I am fulfilling my life’s purpose in the work I do. My friends are the sisters and brothers I never had. I love deeply, and I am loved. Orlando is my home.

What do you consider home? Is it where you were born and reared or some other place? What creates home for you? Tell us about it in the comments section below.

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Monique Cobbs
9 months ago

I was born and raised in Switzerland and lived there until my formal education came to an end and I started work. My first job was in England. I had a seasonal engagement at a hotel at the shore in Cornwall, after which I went HOME. My next job was in Geneva, the French part of Switzerland that lasted almost three years. I used to take the train to go HOME about once a month. When I came to the U.S., got married here and started my family, I would go HOME when I visited the parents, but I also… Read more »

Idalia Martinez
Idalia Martinez
9 months ago

Where is Home? by Idalia Rosa-Martinez  My home is a dome all wrapped in string. But it’s the place I feel safe within. That’s home. My home is a space where I spread my blanket and puff my pillows for a good night’s sleep. And I’m not afraid when late into the night the floors begin to creek. I can leave my bags nearby and I know they won’t disappear and fly and leave me alone. I know I am at home when I can turn the light on and off all by myself. And I can see my clock… Read more »

Norma Heffron
Norma Heffron
10 months ago

This week my husband and I travel from North Carolina back to my home town in Oxford, Michigan. I will join friends and former classmates as we celebrate my 60th class reunion. I thank God for my former home, family and friends . My former home was picked up and moved to another street in town and is being restored by the owner to its 1930 era. I look forward to seeing what the owners have done. My real home is with the Lord and wherever He leads. I am so thankful the Lord brought Patricia to Orlando, Florida that… Read more »

Hal Rhoads
Hal Rhoads
10 months ago

As we age, we lose people who have known us all our lives. Our parents literally taught us how to live! I was fortunate to have my own parents’ advice to rely upon for many decades. Now that they are gone, I’m grateful for my siblings because our shared values make their experience and their wisdom even more valuable in my life.

I’ve known some people who ended up feuding with family members, fighting over issues I didn’t fully understand. That situation is tragic because it deprives all concerned of valuable support and advice.

Cindy Olvey
Cindy Olvey
10 months ago

I carry home inside of me. It is the past and the present. It is people and memories fond or otherwise which cause my heart to swell or ache. It is remembered smells and crisp air. Once I wanted it to be a place, it was a futile effort.

Etya Krichmar
10 months ago

Home is where love dwells.

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