I have never considered Michigan my home. It was where I lived. It contained my house. I have fantasized about places I've never been, places with everything that Michigan wasn't. Those were my home.
A house is where you live, but a home is where you find happiness, where you have friends, and where you belong.
Yes, there are things that I have loved about this place, but my desire for everything unknown has led me to long for everything not here.
I have travelled around the world, always finding a reason why one place is better than good old Michigan. It wouldn't have the uncomfortable memories, the loss, or bewilderment. It would have interesting new people, stores, and food. But you know what? I never lived there. If I lived there, I would have bad memories to accompany those of good nature. It would be a home.
Having bad experiences in one place never means the place has nothing to offer. It probably has a lot more than you'd think, if you'd take time to revel in your surroundings, without focusing on where to go next.
This past week, before I soon head off to college, I took the time to be present in my surroundings. I've recognized all of my expereinces, the good and the bad, and how I've learned from both. I've taken the time to travel to some of my favorite parts of Michigan. The lakes, the forests, the wildlife, and culture. I've taken these road trips across Michigan my whole life, but it was never until now that the waterfalls, lakes, and pure Michigan sand, appeared so beautiful in my eyes.
I live in Michigan. It is where my house is. It is where the college is that I'll be attending for the next four years. It will continue to be the host of good times and bad times, but it is where I am, and I'm happy about that. I could be anywhere else right now, and maybe be happier, but this is where I am now. It is my home.
Someday I will be somewhere else, in fact, I know I will be. I will call another land my home. But that is the future, and right now is the present.