Tomorrow marks one month since we pulled out of our driveway in Prescott, Arizona. We have driven 5,073 miles over the last 30 days, making our way through 17 states, and we arrived in Savannah, Georgia this morning, following our last eastward road before we journey back west.
Savannah is home for me. I was born here, grew up here, spent my first 18 years here...half my life so far. And yet to be away for so long and still call it home causes me to question what that word means to me right now.
Foster, our 3 year old, has asked for home several times on this trip, almost always when he gets upset about something. I believe 'home' to him is familiarity, a picture in his mind of his toddler bed that brings him so much comfort and security. And every time he asks to go home, I get a little pang in my heart, knowing that the house we left is no longer ours. Sure, we're allowed to live in it a little longer, but in my mind it's no longer home.
And I can't explain that to him. Nor can I tell him where home will be, because I simply don't know. For myself the prospect is exciting, because I know the friends we leave will still be my friends no matter where we live. And I know the fun in learning a new town, meeting new people, starting over. But as a mom I'm working hard to think of the best way to coach our kids through this transition, an experience that is brand new to them and difficult for them to try to comprehend.
I wish I could tell them that home is where the heart is, but it's not that simple, is it? If Savannah is home to me, Prescott will forever be home to them.
But perhaps that's one of the most beautiful aspects of home: it is a compilation of so many places that squeeze your heart at the thought of them, and even more so, the site of them. Savannah, Atlanta, South Africa, and now Prescott...they are all home to me.
And yet so is my family. Our camper, this summer, life on the road has been home to me, because the 5 of us have been together every mile. When a tickle of doubt creeps in, whispering in my ear that I have no home, I pause and remind myself how absolutely crazy that lie is. I have many homes, and I have one home. And it is very good.