Home Is Where The Heart Is

Abu Dhabi

How did so many places become home to me?

I grew up in Cheltenham, living between the same two houses virtually my entire life. Of course Cheltenham is home, for a long time it was my only home.

Recently I was thinking about the fact I’m flying back there for Christmas, so I’m flying home right? But what happens when the place you leave has become home too?

As I walk along the Corniche or settle down in my favourite cafe, I marvel at how this quirky city in the desert has become home to me too. Sitting with a group of friends and laughing over Lebanese food got me thinking about how happy I am here, how comfortable and familiar it has become. From my adoptive little brother to the women who I couldn’t live without, I have family here too. Occasionally worlds collide and I delight in biological family meeting adoptive family, each understanding how important they are.

Over the past year two other cities became home to me, and I found that in little ways; my favourite bagel shop in Paris, the familiar daily walk past Macy’s in New York. 

I’m struggling with my privilege at the moment. I can scarcely believe I am in such a fortunate position when so many are suffering. It had been making me sad, an uncomfortable guilt tainting my enjoyment. With help I have come to realise that my suffering doesn’t change theirs, it doesn’t help them, and so I’m looking towards gratitude. I am so terribly grateful for each opportunity I am given, and I hope I can communicate this to the world. It was luck of the draw that I was given the life I lead, but I am trying to be thankful for that everyday.