It’s hard to explain. For more than a decade I had a home, a family with my roommates, community, I laughed on a regular basis, I had a social life. Next I’m frantically showing complete strangers photos of my old house like a grieving parent shows photos of a long lost child and trying not to tear up. It’s been years. I still haven’t recovered from losing the home I thought I would grow old in and I feel embarrassed. I still try to find ways to explain what it feels like. A divorce. Empty nest syndrome. A church disbanding. A community centre shutting down. Graduating. Your best friends moving away. It’s kind of like all those things together. But it’s not. A home means a lot to me. I wish it didn’t so it wouldn’t hurt the way this continues to. Sometimes I wonder if it’s like losing your manhood. From all outer appearances you may look fine but a key part of you is missing. Like a woman losing a womb. Missing this sacred space for nurturing, love, connection, self, belonging. And I’m supposed to just bounce back. Find somewhere else to live, meet new people, do things, find new opportunities to laugh again. This is the hard part. To hold on with open hands, not let go completely, and allow myself room to grasp onto new things. But I miss my home, how special it was and grief keeps coming back like an abscess. Moving on feels like opening myself to a heartbreak all over again. Tolerating pain, uncertainty, fear, and change seems easier with loved ones nearby. Building new relationships takes time, effort. And I feel so tired.