Wherever we find ourselves,we are home; A Namibian on traveling Europe
By: Mimi Mwiya
In the last couple of days of my time in Europe, I found myself feeling terribly homesick. My homesickness wasn’t for any specific home though, it was homesickness for the warmth of Africa, honestly, I would have taken any African country. I needed hot sun in my life. So when I got to Windhoek to find it was a bit chilly due to rain, I did not feel too at home. I’m writing this in the hot, humid heat of Luanda, and I feel completely at home, not because I have a house here, but because I associate warmth with home.
They say home is where the heart is, and I think I have pieces of my heart scattered all across the world, in the places I’ve been, and in the people I love. So I can be at home anywhere. One of my favorite songs, is Nadia Fay’s ‘Home’ and in it, she sings ‘home is not a place but a feeling,’ a sentiment I absolutely agree with. I like to think of the structures we live in as simply being symbolic for what home truly is: a feeling. A feeling of safety, a feeling of peace. We tell people to ‘feel at home’ because we know as long as people feel at peace where they are, they can be home anywhere.
Wouldn’t it be glorious, if instead of thinking of home as the places that house us, we thought of ourselves as housing our homes, the carriers of our homes. Because what we carry in us, no one can take away.
I like to think home can be anywhere, even on the road, on your way to nowhere or to anywhere. I like to think of home as anywhere we feel we belong, anywhere we can dare be ourselves, without fear of being judged or ridiculed.
I like to think home can be a warm embrace or a loved one’s laughter or a warm embrace when we’ve had a hard day. Home can be all the memories and stories we draw our life lessons from. Home is in all the friendships we forge, the people we can count on, the people we know love us as we are, the people who keep loving and accepting us even when we mess up.
Home is in knowing we always have somewhere to run to, and we’ll be just fine, because home is within us. Home is assurance that we can be ourselves, and be enough. Home is anywhere we are able to thrive, without the pressure to, in fact, home is a gentle voice saying, ‘Take your time, no pressure.”
Home is anywhere we dare to be ourselves, anywhere we dare to be unashamed about the things we feel and the things we want. Home is wherever we find new energy to keep going, when the road we are on is far from easy. Home is anywhere we dare admit we are tired and could really just do with a rest. Home is the families we are born into, and those we create for ourselves, be they by heart or by blood.
Home is the names we are called by, that give us the comfort of familiarity. Home is wherever we need not put up any facades, where we can just be. Sometimes home is solitude, other times it is the need for the noises that can drown out our thoughts; strange noises, familiar noises. Sometimes home is a song, and sometimes it is the memory triggered by a song.
Sometimes home is just knowing we are loved, and we have loved, and other times it is fighting for love. Sometimes home is finding purpose, but more times than not, it is being purpose. Home is knowing greatness dwells within us, and therefore we dwell in greatness… and that greatness is our home.
Home is not a structure. We are the structure… We house all our fears, hopes and aspirations, we house the power to make our dreams a reality. We are home to groundbreaking ideas and revolutions, we are home to comfort and peace- be it other people’s or our own. We are home to tears and joy, and to tears of joy. We are home to heartache, healing and growth, we are home to learning, unlearning and relearning. We are home to resilience.
Wherever we find ourselves, we are home.