A Sense of Place

I have never lived in one place as long as a decade, though I am coming close with my current house.  I think that this has given me a very purposeful perspective on how sense of place affects us.  I’ve tried to talk to friends who have had more continuity of home but mostly had a ‘what are you talking about’ result.

 

A sense of place is the feeling of belonging, of feeling that things are right, content.  Right time, right place, right people.  The house and town where you grew up, plus your family and community, surround you and give you the context to decide who you are and what you are about.  If they stay constant, they are almost invisible participants in this process – at least background or scenery in the story of your life.  Although you may have a strong urge either to replicate or escape them.

 

If they change regularly, or at a crucial time in your development these elements might become more than background, they might shape a part of the story.  They might, if you are me, pull into the foreground and make you wonder who you might have been had the circumstances changed.  Had you stayed in one of the places, say?  Or a different location had been chosen.

 

At one point, my dad had two opportunities to move up to run his own council – one in the Chicago area and one in Port Huron, MI.  He took the opportunity in Chicago.  I was already in my late teens, but I do sometimes wonder how the alternative might have affected things.  It is possible he had other conflicting opportunities leading up to previous moves, but I only know of this one for certain.  I do know that he entertained the idea of leaving Scouting when I was in mid-grade school due to a bad situation with council leadership.  He stuck with it and we ended up in Portage MI and I had my own room, plus that was the biggest house we ever lived in.

 

I have come full circle in a way – the first house that my parents actually owned was in Hoffman Estates IL and I have now lived in 2 different houses in this village as an adult.  Moving back to a childhood place was a bit of a comfort at a difficult time in my life.  Familiar places reduced the stress of unfamiliar problems.

moving out-8-28-99

My nomadic childhood has led me to think a lot about community.  About what draws people together and conversely sets them apart.  About how important community is for well-being, for stability – financial and emotional, for opportunity and support.

 

Having no strong sense of place linked to a physical location, I developed a strong sense of place within myself and within the group of people who make up my family and close friends.  I have also taken to collecting things that remind me of people and my past.  Nearly all of the items in my house have history.

 

I hope that you have a sense of place that gives you comfort.

 

© 2014 BAReed Writing | Practical Business, All rights reserved

Advertisements

Tagged: , , , , ,

5 thoughts on “A Sense of Place

  1. Dan Antion May 14, 2014 at 10:32 am Reply

    As a child, I lived in two places that were only a few miles apart. On my own, I moved coast to coast twice but have settled in basically one place for over 30 years. Still, I feel like I am still part of the larger community that I grew up in, even though it’s hundreds of miles away. Interesting thing to think about.

    • Beth Anne Reed May 15, 2014 at 9:02 pm Reply

      I’m curious what it is that helps you to feel a part of that community still?

  2. Dan Antion May 16, 2014 at 9:07 am Reply

    Beth, I’m going to have to answer you in a blog post. Stay tuned.

  3. I Am Pittsburgh | No Facilities May 18, 2014 at 12:55 pm Reply

    […] blogger friend of mine recently wrote an article reflecting on A Sense of Place. I commented that despite having moved away from Pittsburgh, PA after college and having lived on […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

The Sarcastic Muse

Writing. Information. Inspiration. Sarcasm guaranteed.

Stefanie O'Connell

Just another WordPress.com site

Retirement - Only the Beginning

Retirement Planning Beyond Financial

Voices In His Head

Recognized as Blog Of The Year! (unfortunately, it was given the year 1910, the start of the Great Depression)

O at the Edges

Musings on poetry, language, perception, numbers, food, and anything else that slips through the cracks.

Chicago Guy

Chicago!

BAReed Writing, Business Writing

Clear, professional writing is closer than you think.

Dancing Beastie

Seasonal living in a Scottish castle

The Middlest Sister

There are 5 sisters. She's the middlest.

Eyes Like Carnivals

Clear, professional writing is closer than you think.

Blog to Work

Blogging your way to a job.

Human Workplace

Bring Life to Work, Bring Work to Life

rarasaur

frightfully wondrous things happen here.

Stephanie Raffelock

A good story can transform the way that you see the world.

Always The Write Time Blog

Ramblings and Rhetoric

The Art of Non-Conformity

Clear, professional writing is closer than you think.

xplorenorthshore

Smile! You’re at the best WordPress.com site ever

Medievalists.net

Clear, professional writing is closer than you think.

The Creative Penn

Clear, professional writing is closer than you think.

Gifts Of The Journey

The Fearless Pursuit Of A Life Worth Living

Love it or Shred it

Being Zen with Words

Betty Generic

Through the glass darkly

an interconnected life...

Discovering the threads that connect us, one story at a time.

TED Blog

The TED Blog shares interesting news about TED, TED Talks video, the TED Prize and more.

animatingyourlife

A great WordPress.com site

Second Star to the Right

and straight on 'til morning

CAHOOTS

Success is meant to be shared

Daniel Nester

Writer, teacher, husband, dad, Queen fan, inappropriate, dilletante flâneur, Shader.

Bob Mayer

Write on the River

Farmlet

Living cheaply and richly on an acre in Puna, Hawaii

J T Weaver

And in the end the love you take, is equal to the love you make. -- The Beatles

Homepreneurs

Home Business Source

inspirationenergy

be inspired to greatness

Gen Y Girl

Twentysomething. Annoyed with corporate BS. Obsessed with Gen Y. Not bratty. Just opinionated.

Jenna Dee

....living with a following wind

Clarksville Tennessee Web Design, Photography and Marketing

Clarksville Tennessee Web Design, Photography and Marketing

David Gaughran

Let's Get Digital

The Beach Writer

Writer, Freelance Writer, Project Manager, and Consultant

%d bloggers like this: