What is Home?
After our brush with potential disaster while in Kauai, we arrived back home to the usual BS family drama trying to sap the last bit of leftover vacation vibe right out of us, a blessedly intact house and immediate neighborhood, an overjoyed to see us dog and a somewhat indifferent bird. Good to be home for sure, but we had a new outlook that was taking hold that we needed to examine.
What about “home” was important? We don’t have kids. The family we each have left is somewhat estranged or choosing to be cared for by family members other than us. We have a lovely home with a very nice yard we have grown, but it requires constant maintenance. We are familiar with the neighborhood, the restaurants, grocery stores, services, doctors etc. and that is kind of a big deal. Our friends are here, a lot of them anyway. I am a native San Diegan, a source of pride and kind of an identity if I am being honest. I’m sure I could come up with some more things if pressed. What about “home” is important to you?
Home is where the heart is. As cliché as that is, there is something to it. If Dan is with me, and the magnificent Enzo as well, as long as we are blessed to have him, then I am really where I belong. Do you have a partner like that? Or can you travel alone and say that wherever you lay your head is home? I think if you can we are the lucky ones. We are not tied to a location, a town or a building to feel comfortable. We can explore freely. Those who are tethered are limited with how far they can go, how long they can stay, how often they can leave or if they can roam at all. That’s OK for them, they are probably comfortable that way and could not imagine the scheme Dan and I have hatched. Honestly, I think it is kind of amazing that both of us are on the same page with this. How many couples do you know that have radically different ideas of what retirement looks like? Or that fear it because of the time they will suddenly be spending together?
We began to mention our idea to friends, checking the waters so to speak. Most were cautiously supportive. Most couldn’t wrap their heads around the idea that we would sell the house. Most thought we would get an RV. Secretly, I think most didn’t think we were serious. I can understand that. We found out later that I didn’t really know if Dan was serious, and he didn’t really know if I was.
We had much to figure out in the coming year or two. Financially we had done the 401K, IRA stuff and invested in 2 homes in Florida but we didn’t really know what to do with that. How soon could we look at doing something like this? We were a long way off from social security and medicare benefits. Would family be on board? So many questions, kind of overwhelming but we had to start somewhere