“I could tell you my adventures—beginning from this morning,” said Alice a little timidly; “but it’s no use going back to yesterday, because I was a different person then.”

For years, I’ve written the above quote, taken from Alice in Wonderland, to mark the adventures I’ve had. Each time, I seemed to find some new shred of understanding between the words.

Now 31, I see them from a different perspective than the young man that once looked outward from Ohio; longing to understand what it meant to have an adventure.

I lived it. And continue to….

They say that ‘home is where the heart is’. In my case, that never really felt like the case. Home always seemed to be somewhere other than where I was at.

For most of my life, this fractured sense of ‘home’ created a void, where I felt somehow out of place, lost, or looking for something that didn’t know how to be found — or, want to be.

Slowly, things started to make sense. As I got older, I began to realize this ‘external’ sense of home was simply the opportunity to find a new sense of ‘home’ in many different places, phases, people, and times.

Now in my 30’s, I’ve taken this collection of pieces and now begin to see a clear picture of what home looks like – wherever the hell it is…

It looks like coffee in the morning with a beautiful woman, without needing to speak a word.

It’s beautiful sunrises, seen from different places in the world.

It’s a stranger on the street, offering you a smile while they share their dream with you.

It’s a phone call to Mom, Oma, and loved ones.

It’s the feeling of wiping sweat off your brow after spending an afternoon mowing the lawn – and your neighbors, too.

It’s a welcome dinner, holiday feast, and late night tea-time spent over conversation.

It’s a place where you can be yourself – and welcome others to be the same; even if that means wiping tears away from a face, turning red with frustration, or spending many hours seeking mutual understanding.

Home is a place where your hurts and your joys meld into each other; each requiring the other in order to fully shine.

It’s a place where you say new ‘hello’s’ while holding back the tears as you say your goodbyes.

It’s the smile of a child when you give them a painting. The laughter shared between strangers as they celebrate a birthday.

It’s waking up to a beautiful woman and drinking in her morning breath like a fine wine.

It’s a place you long for – even if you don’t have it.

Home. It’s wherever you are. And it’s all over the place. No matter where you are – you’ll find it in your heart.

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