For the entire of my conscious life, I cannot remember to have stayed in a place that I could truly call home. I recall that this personal diaspora started when I was four years old.
From the time I stayed with my parents and sibling, that was when I was four, I remember moving houses at least four times, until we settled in the house where my parents are living now.
I am not homeless as defined by law. I am homeless because I have not stayed in a place and to have enough time to feel secure that for the next days, weeks, month, or year from the time of my first day of stay in that place I will not move again and leave the people I learned to love along the way. I feel so volatile, not a part of any community of people.
The most vivid of my memories were those when I was traveling not when I stayed in one place and created permanent connections with the people.
It’s funny sometimes when I’m left baffled as to what to fill in the blank address field for my C.V. for the probability of me changing my dwelling in the next three months is as high as me getting the job. But this fact is more often devoid of any humor. It’s not funny.
It reminded me during one of the many times I said good bye to people I seem not to have the courage to leave. When everything that is left is inside a blue duffel bag containing only the necessary: few clothes, some mementos, a book or two, and my laptop because I have to leave the rest, or throw away. Bringing them will just be too much of weight to carry.
For an individual to really see himself in relation to his environment, he needs to have a home. Something that I, the refugees in Somalian camps, the Kurds fighting the Turkish forces, or the Russian of South Ossettia, or the several millions Filipinos working in almost all places in the world do not have: a home that can provide security, and the necessary community where we can truly experience the support of our families, or the warmth of familiar views.
Being homeless, while seeing the world and its varied personae, detaches one from the experience of talking with loved ones in person, of letting them see one’s hardship, of letting them understand that you’ve never really liked to be homeless, if given a choice. They will never see you mature nor will you see them grow. For both parties, each is frozen in time, nothing added nor deducted.
But god, how I want to have my own home that I will not be required to leave anymore. A place where I can always go back to and rest whenever I feel that the world has gone extra cruel.
Where shall I be in the next six months? Another hopeless attempt to escape homelessness. Very funny.