What Does Home Mean to You

“Home isn’t a location…it is a feeling.” It is where I grew up, learned, laughed, cried and had fun. It’s where I grew. It is where I became strong and intelligent, confident in my future as well as in my past.

A home is more than just four walls and a roof. It is an environment. It’s the feeling I get when I enter the house. It’s the people who wait to see me home. My home is my solid foundation and I will bring it with me when I go. Home is where people become themselves. It is a place that molds who they will be.

My home is made up of the experiences and moments in my life that have shaped me and taught me. My home is made up of people, and home that takes on human form is called family. Family is not a term that has to do with blood. It is defined by relationships. My foundation will remain in this environment, with the people who have shaped me and taught me how live. No matter where I go in my life. I know I can always return home. Home is where your heart is.

My foundation will remain strong in this environment, with the people who have shaped me and taught me how I live. No matter where my life takes me in the future. I know I can always return home. Home is where the heart is. Definition: A house is a structure that is intended for human habitation, while a home is one that is used for the family. A home is more than just a house. Your home is where you feel safe and secure. A house is not shelter. A home is not a place one would love to live in. A house is not intended to be a home, but it was built for a family. “A home belongs to you but a house belongs to you.”

Many houses are for sale when you look through the newspapers. You may find signs on street corners advertising houses for rent. A house is where people live. It provides shelter. Although there may be many houses in the area where you live, you only have one home. Your home is the house that you and your family choose to call your own. A house was not built by a builder. It became your home when you moved in. Your home is where you and your family are. It is a place that provides security and emotional warmth. A house, however, is a place that provides shelter. People often buy a home and then sell it. People who live far from their homes often complain of being homesick. They lack not a roof, but emotional warmth and security. Every city has a home to care for the elderly. These places are often called “house for the elderly” because they provide shelter and emotional comfort to the older people. English expressions that are common include: There is no home like home, Sweet home, Home, and Home is the place where your heart is. These expressions are not meant to be substituted for the word “house”.

I glance quickly at my boarding pass with a few seconds left. As a dog searching for shelter in a storm, my body drags me through the chaotic sea of people in Mumbai, one of the most populated cities in the world.

I managed to board my flight just in time for the gate to close without being made into a waffle. The flight attendant greets me as I enter the plane through the Jet Bridge. I smile back, while simultaneously jumbling two bags. It’s time to go on a completely new adventure, leaving behind everything.

My parents are ready to depart in the spring 2014. All their luggage is packed and ready to go. I say my last goodbyes to my friends and pack all the luggage that I will need. In just a few days, I’d be in another country with a different culture, different food and different people.

Where is your home? Where is home? In my current location or where will I be in a few weeks? Vadodara, or in Chicago? I’m like a broken compass. It is difficult to determine my true north.

I am still not sure what to do so I turn to Divergent, my favorite novel. I manage to find it amongst a bunch of boxes, albeit with only a few pages missing. The best books will tell you what you want to hear, echoing your thoughts and beliefs. My exact thoughts seem to be written on creased paper as my eyes scan the words. Beatrice’s dilemma seemed exactly like mine: Do you stay in abnegation, as she has done her entire life? Or do you move to Dauntless to have a better future. I felt like Veronica Roth had stolen words from my mind, mimicking the exact same situation that I’m in. All of a sudden I am in the plane between Mumbai and Chicago, feeling like I belong nowhere.

During my flight, I continue to read. Despite the speed of the plane my eyes can still trace the words like a laser. I feel distracted by the man in front of my me, who is snoring very loudly. But I’m not. As I’m done reading, I close the book and place it under my seat in my bag.

Realizing my parents were still asleep, I looked out the window at the farms. It felt like time had paused and everything seemed to have slowed down. It suddenly feels like I have a surge of contentment, happiness, and relaxing energy.

This is my home. I’m at home in Vadodara, Chicago. I’m from Vadodara as well as Chicago. I can speak English and Gujarati. While I love Gujarati for science and math, I prefer English to label my emotions, describe and write. My childhood was spent in India, with many visits to the park near my house, blockbuster movies and endless cricket games with my friends. However, my teenage years were spent in the USA, where I experienced fast-paced social life, beautiful pine trees and competitive speed skating.

My daydreams have given me the answer: Home is not arrival or departure — neither America nor India. It’s in between, at the cusp — this is where I feel most fulfilled, most content.

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