On Returning “Home”

This weekend, we drove from Pointe-Claire, QC to Rothesay, NB to celebrate Thanksgiving with my family. It’s a long, dull drive but it made me feel better about purchasing a Mazda 5 as it was well suited to the trip. 

Since leaving Saint John to live in Montreal, there have been a lot of changes in my family: Children have been born, siblings have gotten married, my parents sold their house to live with my sister, and we lost a family member to cancer. When you leave for greener pastures, you have an image in your head of the life you left which remains frozen in time. But, like the portraits in the Harry Potter books, the image doesn’t have time to wait around all day for you to look at them again.

I thought of home again when looking at the local real estate ads and realized you didn’t have to be upper middle class to afford a decent house around there. I do send resumes down to various companies and have spoken with a few recruiters about available opportunities but so far, not much has come up.

We live in a bit of a bubble in Montreal in that we have little daily contact with our families or anyone else’s for that matter so it’s always a shock to see how entwined my siblings’ lives are, constantly in and out of each other’s lives and homes. If we did move, we’d be stepping into that. Right now, we hardly have any visitors. I can just imagine my mother coming into our house every other day and judging the state of our floors. And when you’ve developed social anxiety in your middle age, going back into the small town fishbowl gives one pause.

Of course, there is another person to consider when thinking about moving home, and that’s our son. For him, the Maritimes is where his relatives live. They’re distant, but not as distant as the ones in Scotland. He wasn’t born there. He was born in Lasalle. While it’s not the West Island, the move to Pointe-Claire has insured that he will be a West Island kid, through and through if we stay here.

In the meantime, we find ourselves raising funds to put down on a house here. Even with diminished expectations, the number of ideal properties continue to fall with each increase in house prices. 

So when you live with several definitions of the word “home,” it’s difficult to know where to put your roots down.

 

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One thought on “On Returning “Home”

  1. Moving to a different urban center is different than to a small town. Urban centers are full of people from elsewhere, so a kid moving would not seem as different. So I can see the concern about a move to a small town. But then at kindergarten age there is some transition to school kid age, so often kids are just starting to get to know each other unless they live near each other.

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