A book for the people at crossroads: “Yearning for Home, While I’m at Home”

Humans are very curious creatures. Not everyone has the same background and upbringing, and so there are times when we may experience conflicting feelings. Until recently, I couldn’t bring myself to read a book. I used to miss the feeling of a book in my hand, and getting lost in it. However, I feel my eyes glaze over when I get a reading assignment.

“Yearning for Home, While I’m at Home” by Rabin Kwon is a collection of essays detailing various life experiences. She shares some of her heartbreaks and loneliness, hoping to be a source of comfort to the readers. Her writings perfectly capture the intricacies and conflicts of being human and may redefine your meaning of home.

If you are ever feeling conflicted, the following are quotes from the book that might help you refresh.

I only thought I could do whatever I wanted once I became an adult.

As a kid, most of us probably had that passing thought that we would be free as adults. Constant reminders of “You should sleep early”, or “Finish your homework” from our parents. And then we go to our rooms grumbling about either running away or wanting to grow up faster. But then we grow up and realize that life as an adult isn’t breezy either. Only then will you appreciate your parents’ effort with you as a child.

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Enjoy your childhood while you still can. 

Are we only allowed to be fully sad when there’s a special reason or a grand story?

In this particular writing, Rabin opens up about her bipolar disorder. During this time, I felt seen, as I also suffer from bipolar disorder. In our time today, it is easier to get informed about various mental illnesses. Despite this, there is still a stigma surrounding it to this day.

I want you to know that if you were a victim of this prejudice that I see you. Do not let them dictate how you should feel, only you can do that. I hope tomorrow treats you a little better.

It’s okay to run away. I’m rooting for your escape.

Sometimes, when we are faced with unfamiliarity we may waver. It is understandable, it is only human nature to be afraid of the unknown. However sometimes, to live is to choose and sometimes make mistakes. Whether escape for you is a passion you have forgotten or a different kind of home, only you can decide.

Sometimes, the selfishness that pops out doesn’t mean only thinking about oneself; rather, it’s just a defensive attitude for oneself.

Being selfish can be a good thing sometimes. Especially when you meet fair-weather friends, the ones that are there for the good times and disappear in the bad. If they are only draining you, it’s okay to be selfish and just cut them off. Keep the people that matter and truly care.

Nothing was there once but because you were there once, your disappearance creates an empty spot.

There may be times when we lose someone precious to us, either a friend or partner. You may think, “Ah, out of sight, out of mind”, but that usually isn’t the case. When you love someone, they will start leaving traces in your life. Maybe you started liking a certain song because your friend suggested it. Or perhaps the color yellow starts becoming noticeable because it was their favorite. And maybe you started putting numbers in your password as a reminder for an anniversary.

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Sometimes, it doesn’t end at the separation. And there is nothing wrong with that. Let yourself feel, reminisce… Do it at your own pace, there is no deadline for moving on.

In the end, we eventually fall in love again.

This is, arguably, one of the best endings to a book I have read. Like how there’s a light at the end of the tunnel, after the hurt and sadness, we will love again.

“Yearning for Home, While I’m at Home” does not tell you what to do, or how to feel. But rather, it’s a book that shares experiences and makes you feel that you are not alone. It feels like the book reached out their hand to you and told you, “Don’t worry, you are not alone.” 

I hope that this book helps give you the strength to get through the hardships you are facing. I hope you know you are not alone.

Check out these other books that might help ease the pain a little: I Decided to Live As Me, You Can Wind Down from Time to Time, A Little Star Still Shines Brightly, and more at APOP. You can also get a discount when you use this link whenever you order along with this code: ANNYEONGOPPA

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