I have been writing a young adult novel about two 12-year-olds who, after extraordinary suffering, find themselves together and homeless.
And now my animal family and I are, just for a change, looking for a new residence. (Wanted: Quiet 2bdrm in Carp, Summerland, S.B., or Ojai. Must be friendly to animals.)
Every day I wonder, “What is home? What creates the sensation of the relief of coming home?” For me, home is where my heart is at peace. Home is where I can be my best, express myself, and surrender to my growth without being judged. At home, being within myself and in prayer is always just a breath away.
Here I ask the animals, “What is home to you?”
Joey (cat): Home is a place where people and animals that love me live.
Cousteau (horse): Home is friendships; knowing that when I am in discomfort and can’t help myself, others will help me.
Henry (golden retriever): Home is any place my mom decorates and we sleep and eat.
Sally (parrot): I think of home as where I lived two owners ago. There I felt safe and well fed. Now I get scared sometimes. Home is where I go in my mind when I want to be somewhere else.
Z (zebra): Home is under the oak tree where I stay dry from the rain. It’s far away from here. It is so deep inside of me that sometimes I get lost trying to find it.
Blanche (cat): Home is in the prayers that my mom and I say together. It is in the connection to the Great Love that watches over us.
Tiny (cat): For this lifetime, home is in my body. It is in the food that I eat.
Jenny (donkey): Home is with friends who make me feel complete. It is the place where I don’t feel lonely anymore.
Chicken: Home is a place where I can let go of suffering and learn to play. Also home is my box. It is the second one from the fence.
Tanner (Labrador retriever): Home is anywhere my mom is. It is also when my family is all together and when I play ball and swim in complete bliss.
Mr. Squirrelly: I keep changing my home. It’s where I feel most comfortable and have room to stretch.
Mourning Dove: Home is always in the song.