Like any other young twenty-something, I desire a life full of adventure; travelling across the globe, meeting new people and perhaps getting tipsy sometimes along the way. So, ever since I went to university and live miles away from my family, I started going across the country. Then across the continent. Then the globe.
I always find new places exciting. I love the feeling of breathing a new air (even if it’s polluted). But recently I felt a bit… scattered.
While talking to a bunch of travel buddies about it, they usually laugh and say, “Man, you’re homesick!”
I laugh along but it kept me thinking: do I miss home? I mean, I’ve lived there for ¾ of my life up until now. Why should I miss it? Do I not have the “travel spirit”? I mean, my parents complain all the time and urge me to come home sometimes, but I’ve ignored their requests for the past few years. My friends back home asked me for a meet-up, but I’m always half a world away or at least out of town.
When I was first introduced to geography, my eyes were wide open. I knew there’s so much to see and I’ve spent too much time in one place: my hometown. So, I promised myself that once I make my own money, I’ll go on travelling as much as I can.
“Homesick” is not in my dictionary. At least until now.
A travel buddy suggested that I head back home for a while and get settled. Maybe not settled for good, but enough to cure my roughly diagnosed “homesick”.
When I landed and get a taxi home, I see how different my hometown is. There are more buildings and restaurants. Some familiar faces have gone, either they’ve passed away or moved out. My big extended family, who always peeked around each other’s businesses as I grew up, are nowhere to be seen. Well, only a few of them stayed, most have moved after they got married or have a new job or retired. Even my parents are having their “honeymoon” for the first week I am home!
But this is the time where I get to reflect.
I feel just as lonely as I was the last time I’m travelling. This is weird. I thought I was homesick, but now that I am home… Why do I feel the same?
Since I am home anyway, I decided to meet up with some old friends and extended families who are still around. I must say, I miss them. Then it hit me: maybe I wasn’t “homesick” as in missing a place. I miss the people. I miss the familiarity I share when I’m around them.
Catching up with them has led me to realize: I miss my home and home is wherever my loved ones are. So, when I left my hometown for another trip, I brought along some of my old friends, family and parents (not at once, I adjust to their schedules and where they want to go). Since then, I’ve felt so much put together and most importantly: loved.
If only I’d realized this sooner, I would have spent as much time with people I love, instead of being too busy searching for new people.