Real Talk: Wherever Feels Like Home
This weekend I am heading to Portland, Oregon. If you have been following along with me for a while, or if you know me, or if you're a stalker (no shame) you probably know that I lived in Portland for a few years.
I love Portland.
I love the people- the blatant embrace of authentic weirdness. I love the food- the food carts, the fancy places, the stacked food trend (I see you Portlandia). I love the coffee- the original Stumptown, my Portland Art Museum café, Ristretto Roasters, random doors to pop in whenever you are walking. I love the beer- Bridgeport, Dechutes, Rogue, Widmer Brothers, Redhook, Portland Brewing Company, McMenamins. I love the mountains- the view of Mount Hood, the hikes just a few minutes from your door. I love the river- even though I would never recommend in town swimming. I love the landscape of Oregon- the journey from rocky beaches, to hippie cities, to multicolored rock canyons.
Point being - I love it there.
It's been a year since I have been back in town. My last trip was for my first friend in Portland, Kara's wedding (hey Kara). Portland is somewhere I think about a lot. Probably every day. I miss the brisk excitement of a creative city. I miss the creative freedom that I had there. I miss a lot of things about it. Which means that I get extremely excited when I get to go back - because Portland feels like home to me.
It's when I walk out of the airport and smell the air. It's when I lay my eyes on Mount Hood for the first time. It's the first deliciously giddy step that I take next to the river. It's the scream of joy that bursts out of my lungs uncontrollably when I run into the arms of my people (Katie, are you ready).
What I'm saying here is that Portland is home. Even though technically, it isn't anymore and even though I didn't grow up there. It's home. How do you decide where home really is?
Is it where the heart is? Is it where the snacks are? Is it where your people are?
Or is it just the place where you feel whole-heartedly able to be yourself in whatever way you feel.
Home is wherever you feel it most, I think. Home is where you are your most authentic self, goofiness and all.