A sanctuary of home. The phrase soothes me.
I was reading a psychological thriller. The protagonist had been out doing seedy things and came home in the wee hours. This was the first phrase of the next chapter.
I took a breath when those words passed through my mind and caught the attention of my heart and soul.
I love the word sanctuary. I feel like I am in a safe place, a place of refuge. And what’s not to like about home.
Our physical home is small and comfortable. All we need for us and the animals. It’s a ranch. We have lived here over 20 years.
I love our home. It’s our sanctuary — and it’s more. It’s also my private sanctuary — my bedroom. It is our hope we can live in place here until it’s our time.
Life happens. Sometimes I just can’t wait to get home so I can brush away the stress which has been building while I’ve been out and about. The anticipation as I pull in the driveway. Almost home. I love being home.
I try to stay away from the hustle and bustle of what society seems to be today — go, go, go. It’s next to impossible to do.
I feel protected in my sanctuary. I know a lot of people who go, go, go. Nothing wrong with it. Just not my bag.
But wait …
When I read that title to an essay a writer posted on medium.com, I was gobsmacked. Sacrilege to be sure. How could someone feel differently than I about the home being a sanctuary?
I’m glad I happened upon this essay because it made me look at things from a completely different perspective. I agree little with her opinions, but I can twist my mind a bit and see where she may be coming from.
I think it’s generational. She’s young. I imagine she has been exposed to more in her young life than I ever was at her age.
At one point she was a magazine editor. Now she’s a feng shui consultant. It took her five years to receive her feng shui certification. She’s all about shapes, colors, textures, locations. All these make up a good part of her world.
She brings up Covid. People having to work at home. Working at home and calling your home your sanctuary do not mix. I had not considered that.
She says, ”I think we are telling ourselves a big lie. I think we are delusional if we think we can have an active, engaged life — a life of purpose — while also retreating from the public space.”
I like my home retreat/sanctuary best, but I could go for a yoga retreat in the mountains. The public space today seems to be the internet and social media. I don’t know the definition. I wish I could ask her what she means by that. Maybe public space is anyplace but home.
A life of purpose? I am happy Emily discovered hers. The experts say a life of purpose gives us longevity. For me in this moment of life, I don’t feel I have a purpose. Fine with me. Right now I’m selfish and just enjoying being. Maybe one day I will figure out my purpose.
I wonder where Emily goes to get away from it all. The stresses of modern life are many, but she doesn’t believe her home life to be a sanctuary. She says “Home is the great collaborator in my life.” What the heck does that mean?
I can’t relate. I read a book about feng shui once. It was interesting. All I learned was our house could never be a proper feng shui abode.
The mere fact that when we open the front door and energy enters, there’s an unobstructed beeline to the back door where that energy immediately exits. Poof!
There is no way to catch and keep that energy in the house. We’re doomed I guess.
She says she can redesign houses to make kids behave better. I just can’t comprehend that. If that were the case, I believe all parents with children would live in a feng shui environment.
Maybe she hasn’t come to the point in her life where she recognizes that home is a wonderful sanctuary. As I like to say, people vary. It really isn’t my business.
Why Home is My Sanctuary
Home is where I feel the quietude of peace and calm. Life slows. My heart slows. I wouldn’t be surprised if my blood pressure was lower. Our loving pets are here.
I realize now that sometimes it’s nearly impossible for some to have sanctuary at home. I’m thinking of children coming home from school or play who may be subjected to child abuse. Who would look forward to coming home to that possibility?
Or maybe adults come home and they’re victims of domestic violence. That would not be a sanctuary.
I’ve learned that people have sanctuaries in different places. A park or garden. A place of worship. An ice cream truck. A basement. Nature. The zoo. Being with grandchildren.
I’d just never thought of places of sanctuary being someplace other than home.
So, what to say?
I hope you have a sanctuary — if you want one. A place to chill and contemplate, maybe even a special place to meditate — I’m not a meditator just so you know.
So, my sanctuary is where I live. As has been said, there’s no place like home, at least not for me.
Thank you so much for reading.