For much of my life, in times of strife, my default response was, “I wish I were somewhere else.” Abuse, loneliness, danger, poverty, extreme heat or cold, even just a general feeling of being a misfit would cause me to feel this way. If only I were elsewhere, things would be so much better.
Dorothy may have decided that there was no place like home, but I always thought that Oz looked like a lot more fun than that dreary farm in Kansas.
But it’s a dangerous thing, assuming there is a geographical solution to all your problems. It often gives you an excuse to avoid solving them. Because Elsewhere is an elusive place. If your solution lies elsewhere, and elsewhere is just out of reach, well, then you’re just out of luck, aren’t you? You may as well hunker down and be miserable.
Wishing you were somewhere else also means that where you are right now is never going to feel quite good enough. How can anyplace compete with this fantasy world that lies just on the other side of the rainbow?
But on the other hand, I do honestly think that life is what you make it, and part of choosing your path in life is deciding what destination you want to strive for. If I hadn’t opted to pack all my stuff and move 3100 miles across the country, I’d probably still be miserable in Florida, dreaming about elsewhere.
Instead, I live in the Seattle area, with a job that pays well, an amazing man who loves me, and a home for which there is no place like.
Lucky me. I finally found elsewhere. May you find your perfect place, too, dear reader, and may it be a little closer than 3100 miles from where you are right now.