On the Road Update: The Evolution of My Definition of Home

August 2, 2017

This past month, our third month of travel, was one for the books. Have you ever been going through something so painful, so complex and confusing, that you felt like it was nearly impossible to work your way through it? Part of me wanted to push away my feelings with every inch of my will, but the more rational part of me encouraged me to lean into the vulnerability (as Brene would say), and feel it all. Unpleasant or not.

Luckily for me, it didn’t take long for me to sift my way through the emotions I was feeling and break them down in a way I could really understand and cope with.

The truth is that I’m homesick. I know, this whole thing with Household hinges on me being able to find a home wherever we land. But you guys, it’s not that simple.

At the end of the day, I know that all I need is Zack and Owen. This is a fact. They are home. But, what if I want more?

I wrestled with this emotion deeply this month in Hvar. I felt an immense amount of shame for wanting more than just my little family and beat myself up over not being 150% happy with traveling at this very moment.

Here’s what this month reaffirmed and helped me bring to light.

1. We’re not going to travel forever. When you set an indefinite timeline it kinda throws your mind for a loop, but the truth is that we will in fact be settling at some point (which we have the control to decide on whenever we feel is right). Reminding myself of this has been crucial.

2. Identifying what you want doesn’t make you ungrateful for what you have. I’ve received so many messages that are somewhere along the lines of, “This is so inspiring. You’re living my dream life!”. Which I have to say is SO KIND, but when I hit a wall and this whole thing feels more difficult than it feels like a dream the guilt creeps in. I find myself asking questions like, “Am I greedy?”, “Am I ungrateful?” or “What’s wrong with me?”. Reminding myself over and over again that wanting a physical home and community somewhere in our future does not make me crazy at all.

3. Acknowledging that we have accomplished what we set out to do incredibly fast.
Our main motivation behind leaving NYC was to position ourselves in a way that Zack could build out his business so that we could both be freelance and spend our days with Owen.

Here’s the thing – Zack crushed it way faster than we would have imagined he would. Despite it being more affordable to travel the world than to live in NYC, we were essentially in the position after one month where we could afford to live wherever, but we had a whole bunch of travel plans in the works and very few belongings. Don’t get me wrong, he worked his ass off to get to this point. Could he have done it in NYC? I don’t believe Zack would have felt confident taking the leap there with such high expenses, and this experience will undoubtedly shape us positively. So since we’re here, we might as well enjoy it right?!

4. Embrace and change.
There are plenty of things in life we must embrace and work through and there’s a whole lot more than we can in fact create change with. Finding the balance is what I’m working on. I don’t believe there’s any harm in beginning to plan for our future, but it’s important to stay present today too. We have some incredible things in the works and home will be there when we’re ready.

5. What home means to me today.
This is a constant evolution. There aspects of home that I have and ones that I crave. Home looks a little something like this to me right now.

Home is a lifestyle in which Zack and I can have the flexibility to be as present as possible in Owen’s life, a physical community of people we love and a location that provides Owen with opportunities in life with a diverse culture. Our home will always nurture a sense of belonging.

I completely underestimated how much I would miss the physical aspects of home, but here I am learning and growing and changing.

Life is quite the adventure people and this month has taught me that sometimes you have to go through incredibly painful stretches in order to learn the most rewarding lessons. Being open to things looking a little different than you planned is really hard, but I am so grateful for this chance to learn so much about myself, and for our family to define ourselves and what we want out of life.

For those of you who have traveled extensively, how did the concept of home change for you through the process?

Leave a Comment

  • I think travelling is hard – and it’s the hardest while you’re in it. Especially as a mother, when what we crave just as much as our kids, as resilient as they may also be, is routine. A nook and place to call our own and cultivate. There’s a reason why humans evolved beyond our nomadic tendencies. Yes, this desire for movement and exploration is still deeply rooted, but I think we have come to need a settlement as well. Hvar seems like more of a vacation spot than a home base, and I can imagine myself craving a bit of normalcy by day 5 as well, let alone after a month. Having said all of this, what I do believe about experiences like the one you’re in the midst of, is that when you are home and settled next month, next year, ten years from now, after some processing (and selective memory) you will remember this month in Hvar with nostalgia and appreciating what you experienced there. Be where you are now, but I hope you feel the lightness in knowing that like many phases of motherhood, it will pass.

    Much love to you and safe travels to Iceland and then to Montreal – as a Canadian, I welcome you and only wish you were a little closer to me in Ontario so I could meet with you in person and hear it all.

    • Danielle! Ahhh! I so wish we could connect in real life too. I agree with every word you said here. I’m so grateful for this hard month already and I know that I will look back on it with fondness after some time as passed. As always thank you for following along here and for always offering such wise words to me! Grateful for you!

  • Anne-Laure

    Even if we didn’t travel the same way you did, we also made our own travels. Moving homes every three years or so is both hard and rewarding ! Especially when you’re a small girl or teen. But talking about home… I think I always considered home as the place I was living in, our moment house, and what we were living inside it. Of course, it was hard getting used to the new house, to the country, create everything from nothing, and create a shelter we would appreciate for our stay. So, according to me, home was fully appreciating everything that was given to me for as long as we stayed somewhere, live it and considering home’s heart were my parents and siblings. As long as we were living in the same place, that was home. Not matter where or what.

    • I love that! It can be so hard to make home wherever you are, but it sounds like you totally have it down. That’s so unbelievably special!

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