The Question of “Home”

Re-posting this, just because….

The eternal TCK** question –   Where is “home”? tells us the following

home [hohm]


1. a house, apartment, or other shelter that is the usual residence of a person, family, or household.

2. the place in which one’s domestic affections are centered.

3. an institution for the homeless, sick, etc.: a nursing home.

4. the dwelling place or retreat of an animal.

5. the place or region where something is native or most common.


1.  abode, dwelling, habitation; domicile. See house.

2.  hearth, fireside.

3.  asylum.

For Third Culture Kids or Global Nomads, it is an ongoing topic.  The eternal question – where are you from?  Where is your home?  These are not easy questions to answer.  Home is here and everywhere.  I am from here and everywhere.

That very last word is my favorite.  Asylum.  The place where you feel safe.  That is where home is.  That is where home should be.  What makes you feel safe?  People you trust.  People who love you.  Mutual understanding and respect.  Comfort.  Growing up, my home was always where my family was, unless I was with them, and then it was wherever we were.  It didn’t matter if it was a hotel room or a house or an airport.  As long as we were together and had a pack of cards nearby, we were at home.  A good card game could get us through anything.  Some of my fondest memories are of blackouts during torrential rainstorms playing cards by candlelight.

We all continue to search for the elusive “home” but I think we know where to find it when we really need it.

“The strength of this family bond works to the benefit of children when parent-child communication is good and the overall family dynamic is healthy. It can be devastating when it is not. Compared to the geographically stable child, the global-nomad child is inordinately reliant on the nuclear family for affirmation, behavior-modeling, support and above all, a place of safety. The impact, therefore, of dysfunction in this most basic of units in exacerbated by the mobile lifestyle.”

Excerpt from GROWING UP WITH A WORLD VIEW By Norma M. McCaig

**TCK’s are people who lived outside their passport country as a child


  1. Like many of you, I moved a lot as a kid. 8 schools in 12 years, and I’m the only one of my siblings that got all 4 years of high school in the same place – school, city, country, continent. We went to Kenya when I was 13 and I left when I graduated high school and was sent “home” to college. For many years, for me, Kenya was “home”, It was the place I spent the very important years as I morphed from child to adult, and I had lived there longer than any other place. Now, 40 years later, home has become the place I live. I’ve had to make my own “home” as the one I had growing up changed too much for it to ever be “home”. So I sort of have 3 “homes” – Canada, the place I was born and where most all my family is; Kenya, the place I “grew up”; and the house my wife and I live in, and where our kids come visit (which happens to be in Texas).

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