I have had the pleasure over the last few weeks of spending some time back in Scotland. This visit was great and I absolutely loved getting to spend time with our family and friends but it has given me some food for thought in terms of where is now our home? When talking about taking this trip I definitely said, without even thinking about it, that I was going “home” for a few weeks. But when discussing returning to Montreal I also found myself slipping into saying “home” and this made me wonder where really is now home for us. Is it Scotland, where I hung my hat for the best part of 30 years? Or is it Montreal, where I now actually live? It’s hard to know what the answer is.
If you ask my husband where home is he views it much more black and white than I do, “Home is where my dog is and Max is in Montreal”. For me though it’s far more grey. I have spent all of my life in Scotland and I am ridiculously proud to be Scottish. My family are in Scotland, we still own a home there and I do believe that one day we will return there, but yet right now it’s not where my life is. You see I don’t live in my house, someone else does. I no longer work in Scotland, someone else now does my job. And for the last 18 months it’s been Montreal that we have spent all of our time in and it’s here that we have created a life for ourselves. Our worldly belongings are here, as Mark rightly points out our dog is here and it’s here that we go to bed each night and wake each day. Our life is here. Yet a few times when I was back and ‘slipped’ and described Montreal as “home” someone would correct me and say, “It’s not home, this is your home”. But is it? At the time I laughed it off, “Of course this [Scotland] is home” feeling almost guilty that I would feel anything else, but it did make me think, what is it that constitutes “home”?
The dictionary definition states that home is, “the place where one lives permanently, especially as a member of a family or household” but reality is more complicated than that. In the last year I have only spent 2 weeks in Scotland and I’m not sure when I’ll next be back but to me Scotland will always be home, regardless of how long I’m gone from it; I will always be proud to say I’m Scottish. But, at the moment I don’t live there and my life is in Montreal. I haven’t grown up here, and I don’t have the same memories here that I do in Scotland but I do live here and I do love it and we have made it our home. So maybe for now I can be greedy and call both Scotland and Canada home? Maybe I don’t have to choose? Montreal is home because I live here, my husband is here, I have great friends here and my life at the moment is here but Scotland will also always be home as my family and oldest friends are there and Scotland will always have my heart. This is both a blessing and a curse, something which I think this quote (Author unknown); one of my favourite quotes, sums up perfectly.