Isn't it weird going home after you've been away for awhile? The way you feel when you drive down familiar streets - the time you spent walking with your friends when you were in high school. Your favorite late night diner , nights spent over stale but wonderful coffee, conversations that flitted around into the familiar place of an old friendship. The spot in your kitchen where you sat every morning with a cup of a tea, after you graduated college and moved home and worked to save up money so you could move across the country to a life that at the time was simply an idea but now a reality.
Being home is a mix of wonderful and sad and weird. It's sad because sometimes it feels like an old sweater you've outgrown. A favorite sweater you desperately try to squeeze yourself into but you realize it just...doesn't fit. You love it and part of you wants to fit in it, but it just isn't right anymore. So you look at it and sigh and tuck it away somewhere special so you can always go back from time to time and remember how much you loved wearing it and how right it felt.
It's a tired subject.
"Where do I belong?"
"Where am I called?"
"What should I do with my life?"
I write about it most and I write about it often. Maybe because there's no definitive answer. Maybe because it's pretty relevant to a twenty-something who is trying to figure their life out. Maybe it's because we all know there will never be an answer and we'll never know where we "belong" because that's such a petty sentiment and doesn't really make sense.
* * *
I love my hometown and I love my city. I love sitting in my home church and seeing people there worshipping God. I love driving to Melrose diner late at night with friends and seeing the Philadelphia city sky-line. I love how broken everything is and a little edgy and rough and loud and how where I've grown up has shaped the person I am.
Sitting here in this kitchen where I spent thousands and thousands of mornings sipping my tea and writing - it's just...weird. I can't express it in any other word. It's weird because I love it and I miss it and it's weird because I know God calls us out of our comfort zone.
And sometimes I hate that!
I hate being uncomfortable! Who doesn't? Who goes around and on their Facebook profile puts, "I'm Nina, I'm 23, love reading and writing and being uncomfortable!" If there's one thing I love, it's being comfortable. So why does God call us to lives that are so completely opposite of that?
Because in the end, as I think about it, I realize I wouldn't want it any other way. When we are put into situations and places that cause us to look at our character and our lives, it helps us grow and it furthers the story that God is writing for us.
Isn't that why we love movies and stories about people that do something amazing and brave? Isn't that why I am obsessed with Harry Potter? Isn't that why I watch episode after episode of Doctor Who on Netflix? Because we all love a good story - everyone loves the story of the underdog fighting for a cause, for the good of the world.
God already wrote the best story ever and we're all apart of it and it's so freaking cool that it just makes me want to be all like DAAANGGGGGGG I AM BLESSSSSEDDDDDD. Do you know what I mean? It's beautiful.
So yeah. Being home is weird and great and special and tiring and awesome all at once.