Oh there’s no place like home for the holidays! – but, what exactly makes up a “home”? Is it the place where your family is? The place you feel most comfortable or safest? Is it the place where you share a lot of laughs? Everyone has a different definition of home. Someone may find comfort in some alone time with a book while others may desire to be around their loved ones, blood relation or not. Irregardless home is a special place for many.

Now that I am finishing up my first semester as a sophomore in college, I realize how much I appreciate my home town. For years I wanted to see something new and be in a small town. I am fortunate enough to attend a school in that small town I longed to live in for so long – and I love it. However, being away home makes me cherish this place where I’ve had so much growth, laughter, tears, and love – this place where I grew up and the people I grew up with.

I find myself, now, talking about “home” (as in school) to my friends. I can’t wait to go “home” I often say. To me that’s strange to grasp. Just a year ago, when I was in my first year, I talked my new friends’ ears off about “home”. I talked about how I wanted to visit all my hometown friends and how much I just plain missed it. Now me and all my hometown friends are talking excitedly about our new home – our place for four years and possibly beyond.

Now this does not mean that my childhood home isn’t and won’t always be my first and real home, but home has taken on a new meaning in my life. I am excited to see how it unfolds in the future. Besides, who’s to say we can’t have multiple homes? Another place I consider to be home is my old high school. Whenever I go back to visit this warm feeling rushes back and I reminisce about all those memories with childhood friends. All throughout high school it felt like a second “home”, and even now as I visit, it feels just as welcoming and just as familiar.

So what makes up a “home”? As a younger girl I never would have imagined feeling at home anywhere else besides my parents house. Now I look at all the places and people who make me feel at home and cannot help but smile. I am so grateful. For anyone who is anxious about embracing a new place of learning, I encourage you to find the comfort of home there. It will make all the difference to your college experience. For those of us who are in college, let’s appreciate all the places where we feel at home and those wonderful people who make it feel like home.