Sometimes, psychically, we need to complete the journey of leaving home, before we can find home. I’ve seen this translate literally for clients who feel their mother is always present, telling them they’re a slob, or they could never keep house as their mother could. A kind of paralysis exists, a learned helplessness of how to clean or organize; or a resignation of not knowing how one wants to live –to decorate, or how to create a nurturing home environment.

This poem by Mary Oliver, captures, for me, the depth of the journey needed to find one’s own home.

Mary Oliver – The Journey
One day you finally knew
What you had to do, and began,
Though the voices around you
Kept shouting
Their bad advice –
Though the whole house
Began to tremble
And you felt the old tug
At your ankles.
“Mend my life!”
Each voice cried.
But you didn’t stop.
You knew what you had to do, though the wind pried
At the very foundations,
Though their melancholy was terrible.
It was already late
Enough, and a wild night,
And the road full of fallen
Branches and stones.
But little by little,
As you left their voices behind,
The stars began to burn
Through the sheet of clouds,
And there was a new voice
Which you slowly
Recognized as your own,
That kept you company
As you strode deeper and deeper
Into the world,
Determined to do
The only thing you could do –
Determined to save
The only life you could save.


Finding home


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