Can’t go back now

Heather (8:04am): But what if your heart belongs in a myriad of places that still speak your name?

As I watched the sunrise over Castle Keep from the Newcastle train station, I texted with my friend Shaun about the meaning of home. I didn’t want to leave Newcastle all over again, but more and more that week I realized that it didn’t belong to me anymore. It had moved on, but I hadn’t.

This was the cafe where I waited for my train to London the first time, just days after I first arrived in Newcastle. I ordered a lemonade and it turned out to have ginger in it, which I’m allergic to. It was a baffling moment in which I felt extremely foreign. And thirsty. Thursday I felt more capable, travelling alone once again but so accustomed to it by now. Things had come full circle, which meant that it was over.

I think that was the hard part. Being there made me realize that it really was over and I was never going to have it back. Any of it. Newcastle, Europe, school. It was all done. I took a bus that went close to my apartment, about two blocks away, and it hurt to look. My mom asked if I went to see my apartment building, but I couldn’t have. Not ever. That place was home and I loved it so much. And it belongs to someone else now. Newcastle belongs to someone else.

My friends don’t belong to me anymore either. They have lives that go on without me, and all I can hope for is a passing message or a small moment of connection. I was a visitor in a place that I used to call home.

I have lived in many homes in three different countries. And in each one I was hoping to find the place where I belonged. But now it seems like pieces of me belong to each place and no matter where I am I feel displaced.

My trip was a bittersweet whirlwind. I was there just long enough to say my goodbyes all over again. To realize it was over, stamped signed and sealed like the certificate they handed me after I walked across the stage.


  • By Faebala, December 11, 2010 @ 12:54 pm

    Beautiful post, melamin. Beautiful song.

    Beautiful you. *hugs tight*

  • By steph, December 11, 2010 @ 2:44 pm

    It’s like that quote I posted from Mrs. Dalloway… that to really know someone you have to know the places they inhabit too, the people they know etc etc etc. I think that every time you live somewhere different you leave a bit of yourself behind, but you also take something new too and you never will be the same. It’s the same with people, when you say goodbye to someone important you lose that self you were with them and you’re different.

  • By Shaun McAlister, December 12, 2010 @ 8:53 am

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