The Extrahuman Union

Coming Home to Connecticut

Posted on: May 29, 2012

Last week I read a report about how Connecticut is graying, which made me think about Northeast PA (the place my family comes from), and what we can do to keep young people from leaving. Here’s the article: To the Young Yankee Far Away: Come Home (CTnewsjunkie.com).

I have a lot of feelings about the Wilkes-Barre/Hazleton area. My family is from there, and a lot of them are still there. It’s a beautiful place. My own parents moved back there recently, so I have even more reasons to visit. Someday soon, I probably will.

But when you’ve changed as much as I have, and in ways that don’t always make people comfortable, going home gets harder. That’s probably why I’ve put it off as long as I have. I’m just not sure I’m ready to face what’s waiting for me there. I don’t know if I want to feel that sense of loss at having cut myself off from the ancient, powerful current flowing from those hills.

I know I don’t have a lot of time to do some of the things that need doing there. So I’ll go back someday, and face that final, most difficult coming out. Just… not today.

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5 Responses to "Coming Home to Connecticut"

I always find it interesting how differently we view this. While I have family there and even grew-up there, I feel no connection to the region.I wonder if maybe it’s to feel a sense of being from there if one isn’t directly from there.

I think it’s just that I’m more sentimental than you are! I’ve always had this push-pull relationship with places I’m from or call home, I’m powerfully drawn to them while simultaneously trying to escape or transcend them.

I won’t attempt to argue that this cannot be the case (though that I do feel that way about Durham, the city I consider to be my true home,) but I do think there is much to the minutia one experiences through daily life in a place, and that can shape the sense of belonging there. I see NEPA much differently when I visit my in-laws, while the memories of the years of lived experiences there keep me from feeling wistful.

I really do think it’s just because we’re different people with different perspectives. I do this with every place I have a connection to.

I must admire your ability to do so, then. Your post spoke to me because, with that exception, I feel that way about the various places I’ve been through the years.

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