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January 31st 2006
Published: April 19th 2006
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With only 14 days until I leave for S. Korea, I have been busy readying books on Korean history, war, culture, politics, religion, etc. There is little, I find, that can truly prepare me for a place I have never experienced. Here is what has been on my mind these last few days:

“Home is where the heart is.” Or so I have heard.

At one point, after my family moved to Middle Tennessee, I thought I had left my heart in sunny California, somewhere on Glory Lane in a castle made of redwoods or possibly even in a thicket of blackberry bushes stained with memories of long summers and no television. This was my Home.

After I left for College in East Tennessee, I thought that I had left my heart in Murfreesboro, where I had spent the last 6 years with my parents and 5 bothers and sisters. It was there I learned to let go of the past and embrace the future; it was there I began to respect people that were so different from myself; it was there I began to define my own talents and diverse interests. This was my home.

After being at Maryville College and then coming home for summer and Christmas break, I thought Maryville held my heart. It was perhaps somewhere in the four walls of Anderson Hall. Possibly in the hands of the professors that had shown me what is was to posses a passion for knowledge and learning. Though, it might have been captured in the fiery sunset over the Smokey Mountains, or possibly in those who had shown me the true meaning of friendship and compassion. This had become my Home.

Now I am to embark on a new journey. One that will challenge every aspect of my life: my strength, motivation, faith, and even my friendships. Here I will face not what life use to be, but how it can be, and how it truly is.

So, when I leave Korea? Korea will not be my home, but I know that my heart will stay there in the Buddhist temples and dark subway tunnels. It will stay with the friends I am so blessed to see again and the ones I will have met and have to leave behind.

So this is my conclusion: Home is only an abstract idea of a place we are never truly at. It is where we think we belong only to find that when we are there, it is another place we feel right. We learn and grow from the places we experience because they build us into the person we become. So I try not to think of it as leaving home, if anything, I am going there.


31st January 2006

Just a note
2nd February 2006

:D.... i like your entry... AND.. i finally checked my email!!!!
16th February 2006

I LOVED my little bear! i was having the worst day and he brightened it! (I named him Tree hehe). So, I hear you're there! I can't wait to hear how you feel... It's scary probably but enjoy every second of this weird settling in time! We're thinking of you. Love, Georgia*
21st February 2006

off to see the world
Wow! First I want to say you write very well. I have read a few of you r articles and they are all nicely written. Second; whachadoin in S. Korea? We are, of course, in sunny (yah that is a laugh) England. I am sure you will have as much fun as we are exploring new and exciting places and making wonderful new memories. Keep in touch and let us know how you are doing. Heather, Justin and the kids
21st February 2006

I love You
I know you are being safe and using your head I am praying for you... this looks like a cool media for you to communicate with. as far as where home is you are in my heart
21st February 2006

bekah. love the thing though..that first pick, it's super emo. what the hell were you thinking about? war, poverty? what? gotta go to pwcc. halla. sarah
24th February 2006

Super E M O ?!!!! Yea... <(:0
13th November 2006

House and Home
Home is an abstract idea, but it is possible to actually be there. I think that you lost touch of home moving so much when you were young, so your definition of home is tied up in "somewhere else". My home is at my parents house in a different city from where I actually grew up. I dont feel right there, but I do feel like its home. The formative period of my life is still captured in the area where they live, so thankfully it is still "home" to me. The place where I 'feel right' is probably like most people on this site- anywhere than where I am currently at!
4th January 2007

I enjoyed reading your post. Home for me has begun to be an abstract place, too. I've moved 30+ times in my life and traveled a lot on top of that. Home now is usually defined most now by the people I am with. I'm at home with family and friends, pretty much no matter where I'm at.

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