For a long time I have wanted to move, probably out of Minnesota, but when I think about where to go, I get muddled.
Because I think there might be several kinds of home, and mine pull me in different directions. Yet they intrigue me.
Minnesota is my childhood home; I grew up here. I loved my childhood home, yard and surrounding woods and fields on Grey Cloud Island. I find comfort in the prairies, farmlands and tree-lined lakes in Minnesota, and I resonate with the culture and people of the upper Midwest.
Minnesota is not my body home, however; it’s not the physical environment that my body loves. My body hates winter here, and sometimes even summer. My body feels happy and at home in places like Hawaii and non-summertime Florida. My body loves warmth (but not extreme heat), humid breezes on bare skin, the sound of ocean or river, walking barefoot on a beach or strolling in gentle rain. But I have never been interested in living in Hawaii or Florida because they don’t resonate with me in other ways.
I think I also have a soul home, a querencia. Querencia is a Spanish word that means the place where you are your most authentic self, where you draw strength and feel at home. So a soul home would not simply be a place that I love or feel is majestic or powerful, like Lake Superior or the Rocky Mountains, but a place where I feel larger, stronger, more ME. I haven’t found one specific place like that, but I think my soul home is somewhere amidst the temperate rain forest areas in British Columbia, Oregon or Washington. (My body worries though about finding a place there with sufficient sun and warmth.)
And my travels to Ireland, Scotland, Malta and Crete have made me wonder if there is another soul home, an ancestral or transpersonal home. There are sacred sites in those places where I viscerally feel deep kinship with the ancient culture and people who lived there, a sense that these are “my people,” despite the millennia that separate us. So I feel an inner expansion and sense of belonging when I go there.
Perhaps there is still another kind of soul home, a home of companionship, though it’s not one physical place–the home composed of all the people I love and who love me, the circles I’m a part of, those people and communities where I can be my strongest, truest self. Most of that home is here, though there are dear parts of it scattered far and wide.
So do I move from Minnesota or not? To where? I guess no matter where I live, there will still be other places that call to me, other homes waiting to nourish me when I visit. Maybe that’s not so bad….
What is your idea of home? Do you have several kinds of home, do you think, or are your homes well aligned in one place?
(The bottom photo is a wood carving by a Swedish artist named Herman Rosell.)