After months of toil, I feel ready to return home to Scranton. For weeks, the thought of reconnecting with family and friends sustained me as I struggled with the graduate school experience. In fact, I have been waiting for this moment since I applied to graduate school. I envisioned the warm feeling of meeting friends and family over dinner, coffee or drinks. As I prepare to go home, I am asking myself the following question: What is home?
I began to answer this question during the weekend. This weekend, I travelled to Phoenix, Arizona to attend the wedding of my best friend, Allen. On Friday, I found myself in his apartment with my friends Kam (the bride), Katie and Susan as well as the Ted and Karen, the father and mother of the bride. Picture the scene from Home Alone when the family realizes they overslept. People were running around the small apartment dressing for the rehearsal. Amidst the chaos, I felt at home for the first time since August. At that moment, I realized that home is relative. Specifically, home isn’t a physical location. Instead, the presence of family, friends and loved ones constitute home. As I sat in the living room waiting for my turn in the bathroom, I felt very much at home in a city far from my hometown. At that moment, I realized that I do not need to be in Northeast PA to be at home. On the contrary, I can make a home anywhere by surrounding myself with friends and loved ones.
So, my challenge for the next quarter will be to make Seattle my home. But for now, I will enjoy reconnecting with my friends and family in my hometown. I hope you all can do the same.
I hope everyone has a most Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year!