We went back to New York for the holidays. Well, the fake holidays. The kind you hold a week earlier than the rest of the world because plane tickets have a way of going way, way up in price the week of December 25th.

So, it’s Christmas on Saturday – sort of. That’s what we’ve decided.
And we’re home for it.
Sort of.

It didn’t feel the way I thought it would, “coming home.” (Though, let’s be honest, very little ever feels / looks / turns out the way we think it will.) I’d grieved for months over the lack of my little town, my beautiful trees, the challenging, arrestingly beautiful and humbling weather (nothing makes you feel so small as a snowstorm). I missed the people and the places, and that stupid orange chair that is technically only big enough for one-and-a-half people, and that b.b. and I always crammed ourselves into, together.

I’ve come home. I’ve sat in the orange chair. And still, that little tug…

“I want to go home.”

Silly heart, I think. I shake my finger at myself (incidentally, this is difficult to actually physically attempt. I would recommend attempting it only very metaphorically…). You are home.

And still, it doesn’t feel that way.

Do I miss Texas? Hell no. But am I as finally blissfully happy as I thought I’d be, coming back here? … also, no. It’s not TX that I miss – with its humid, practically soggy climate and even more unfortunate political climate… It’s my little apartment – our – little apartment, that’s just ours. It’s being in charge of my own destiny, day to day. I feel like a child again, being here, staying with b.b.’s parents and having to borrow a car any time I need to go somewhere. It’s nothing they’re doing wrong – they’re lovely. I’m just used to being the grown-up, the head-of-household. (well, co-head-of-household.) So, thankfully, this trip “home” has actually made me happier about being in texas. I was blind to the advantages, before, of being so far away, of being so frustratingly and intoxicatingly independent. It is good and it is awful and it is hard work and I am looking forward to returning.

And also,

my father has cancer. My mother just told me last week. They’re going to try and treat it with diet – no traditional medicine. I have lots of feelings about that but mostly, right now, it’s just making for a very weird Christmas season.

Home is… I think I’m learning that home is… Not “where you make it,” exactly – nothing so cliche, but…

It’s not a place. It is a feeling. And sometimes that feeling is fleeting, but you still had “home” for just a brief moment, and that’s okay. And sometimes that feeling lasts a week, and sometimes that feeling is a person, and sometimes that feeling is a certain smell or a certain piece of clothing or cup of coffee,

or that spot right between your husband’s shoulder and his neck where your head fits just perfectly.

these things are home, more so than any place.

And that’s… okay.


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