They always say you can’t go home again, that what you hold as memories and nostalgia for your past places of being is something that can never be returned to. It will only ever live in your memory, will never be a manifestation of reality again. You can try to go back, but you will just end up disappointed in the long run, because that home you yearn for no longer exists.
It’s a depressing thought, but one I’ve experienced before, with summer camp. It was the happiest times of my childhood, but no matter how much I miss camp, what it was for me is something that will never again be. I’ve revisited my old camp and felt wronged by the changes they made, felt saddened that the girls going there today were never going to know the experience I had. I’m sure the counselors that left the camp when I was young had the same feelings though. I spent twelve summers at a place that will be entering its 67th summer this year; the fact I have emotional investment is almost as guaranteed as the fact things will not be the same. That’s another thing they say though, right? The only constant is change.
I’ve been quite sad the last twenty-four hours, and it seemed to come from nowhere. I’ve spent all of today at home, in my pajamas. I slept over twelve hours, skipped Swedish class, and didn’t work on a paper that’s due sooner than I want to think about. I’ve cried at least four times today, one of which I kept asking myself, “What’s wrong with me?” It’s as if I was thrown heavily into deep PMS (only I’m on medication to prevent such atrocities), and it’s taken me all day to figure out what is wrong:
The worst part though, is I’m homesick for a home I can’t return to.
It’s multi-faceted, really. Part of me is homesick for my life in Vegas, your standard variety homesickness. Not for the city per se, because you know I have a love/hate relationship with my hometown, but for the comfort. I miss being able to buy ice cream at 2am or know where to get great Chinese food. I miss knowing what hikes I could go on to get away from it all to rejuvenate my soul. I miss driving away stress with the windows down, singing at the top of my lungs on a large stretch of deserted highway. I miss knowing a town so well.
More so I miss the friends I had there. With yet another friend getting an amazing job out of state (congrats Amanda, well deserved), it means there’s one less reason for me to ever go back. When I think of the friends I miss the most, the ones I keep in contact with regularly and would want to visit…there’s soon only going to be maybe three left in Vegas. Lots of old friends, coworkers, and places to see, but my base of closest friends now requires a cross-country road trip. Having those friends in one place is a home that doesn’t exist anymore, and won’t ever again.
Another thing not waiting for me in Vegas is my mom. Even though I’m going on 3½ years since she passed, there are still a lot of times when I really wish I could talk to her. When I was in Korea, especially towards the end when I couldn’t wait to get the hell out of my job and back home, we talked 2-3 hours several nights a week. Her practically nocturnal sleep schedule worked perfect for me living abroad, and I think I severely underestimated how important being able to call a friendly voice from back home is. With the 9-hour time difference, I’m stuck with weekend evenings for anyone not local.
As I’m making summer plans to go volunteer on organic farms, I think of how my mom and I talked about having a small farm someday. A cabin in the middle of the woods, with a cow named Bessie and two pigs named Bacon and Pork Chop. (I didn’t say we weren’t twisted individuals…) With her disability payments and Section 8 it was something that we might have been able to financially pull off. Now it’s just another dream that will never be realized. I guess you can also be homesick for a home that never was as much as one that has disappeared.
I’ll never be able to go back home to my mom, and that hurts. I used to call her when I was upset, and now writing has sprung up as a mediocre substitute. It’s a way for me to get it out to make me feel better though, so it’s become a habit.
I know this is probably not what you want to read about. I only end up posting these, when I do, because sometimes I think you should know where my mind is. Fun adventures with amazing pictures that make you jealous I’m here and you’re stuck back home seem to be the norm. This certainly wasn’t what I was expecting to post on my 6 month anniversary of being in Sweden.
It’s life though, and my lack of posting is not all negative; as living here has become normalcy instead of a novelty, there’s less to share and less pictures to take. Contrary to what this break in several months of silence might suggest, I’ve been really quite happy the last few weeks.
But an adventurous life overseas is still a life. There’s ups, downs, happy accidents, disappointment, joy, the whole host of human experiences. They just come with a Swedish accent now.
I’ll post pictures again – there’s the visit to Iceland before I got here, events during orientation week, and Christmas in Prague to share, and spring break is just around the corner.
Today though, I really miss all of you, and I just wanted you to know.