Returning home for Christmas was an odd one. This was my first time coming back for a holiday since I'd moved out. It seemed different for a variety of reasons: I didn't feel I was trapped in a house I felt I didn't belong; I had been working Christmas Eve so it didn't feel like Christmas had arrived; I was drunk for the first night. I've been back since Christmas Eve, and it's put me in a weird frame of mind. Old habits like staying in bed until 4PM watching stupid TV shows on my laptop and not bothering to put on any make-up have quickly reappeared. I've never liked Christmas, but this is even stranger than usual because I'm supposed to be studying for exams for a scholarship I'm not sure I'm capable of getting, or actually want to get. It's hard to muster the motivation to do anything when you're constantly sleepy because the house is over-heated, and you're used to being cold on winter nights because you live in a flat intended for students.
It's strange returning home, because you can sit in your room all day doing nothing because you're an only child and there isn't anyone else around. I joke that my flatmates asking where I'm going when they see in the hall wearing my coat freaks me out because I'm not used to that, but truth be told, it's something you quickly miss. It's strange to come home and breathe a sigh of relief because you can properly be alone. It's even stranger to realise that even though that's something you thought you needed, perhaps it's quite the opposite. It's strange to want to grab your sketchbook or a camera or some Panadol and realise all those trappings of your life are in their places in your other home, the one you live in more often. It's strange to look around at the trappings of your life from your life before you moved out, the books; stuffed animals; autographs from Michael Cera; the birthday cards.
It brings you to thoughts of what will happen when you move on from the flat you live in now. Will your other family of friends stay with you, or will you all drift apart? Or was that going to happen after college anyway?
2014 will be another year of moving homes, making a home for myself in a different country for a few months, maybe moving out of the flat I've made my home. My mother talks about selling this house that saw me through my teenage life. It's hard to know where home is. Is it with your friends, your family, is it where your most prized possessions are, or is where you fall asleep at night?