This is something that I’ve struggled with my whole adult life. Life has a way of beating you down, robbing you of joy and warmth. It takes a great deal of strength and work to stay positive and stave off the constant onslaught of negativity that tries to enter our lives and minds from every direction.
For many of us, home represents something sacred, a time capsule of endless fun and innocence. For others, it only represents pain and suffering. I can’t quite claim the former or the latter, but perhaps a mix of the two. I was a lonely child, but a very creative one. I often (as I do even today) escaped into myself.
I’d drag all the lawn furniture in the center of the backyard, with brooms, pots and pans, planks of wood, anything I could find to build this makeshift plane (that doubled as a fort depending on my current adventure). I could close my eyes for just a moment and open them again with my alternate reality loaded up, pull the throttle back and shift my eyes into the sky with such enthrallment in my fantasy that I would actually feel that weightless feeling of suicide similar to butterflies one gets when jumping from somewhere high.
I’d get so lost in my fantasies that I would be in a trance, not able to hear my mother calling me in for dinner to the point where my sister would have to come out and shake me “Didn’t you hear mom calling? She’s been calling you for like the last ten minutes.” I was always mildly disturbed by this, not able to believe that they were really yelling at me and I couldn’t hear them.
Before I had ever heard of a “memory palace” I had used my childhood home for this technique. Just for fun, I would close my eyes and fly up the street to the corner where my house was, fly through the front door and around the living room, kitchen, bedrooms, knowing exactly where everything is, a perfect blueprint in my mind.
When attempting to “go home”, whether that be only in your mind, physically, or in my case, both, I think what it ultimately boils down to is are you trying to run away from something or toward something? For me, my desire and ultimate goal to buy my childhood home I think is just one puzzle piece in my attempt (probably a naive one) to understand myself, reality, and maybe even reach some level of enlightenment.
If the sad truth really is that we cannot go home again, I don’t think that’ll stop most of us from at some level, trying. Madness.