Dear Diary

November 13, 2013

Small risks and tiny adventures.

Naomi

I spent much of last week back at my parents’ house, and it gave me a new perspective on my lifelong love/hate relationship with my hometown. There is nothing wrong with Birmingham, I was just asking too much of it. That’s why I had to move somewhere larger, with more to offer: More shops full of old clothes—like Brick Lane, where I got the best fleece-lined denim jacket the other day. More museums and art galleries, where there is constantly something intriguing to see. Every musician and band I love is almost guaranteed to come to London, and when they do, it will take nothing more than a short ride on the tube to see them. In comparison with all this, my hometown is severely lacking.

Being home feels so different now. Because I no longer feel trapped there, I can tell the things I love that I love them. Last week the huge park by my house, in which I have walked countless times, was properly autumnal, all fiery leaves on the trees and on the ground, damp earth, and misty breath. I went for walks in the dark evenings (there’s always light in London) and had bubble baths every day and the sky was actually clear and the streets were marginally quiet and everything was exactly where it had been before but I could feel distant enough to appreciate it all.

I wasn’t my usual neurotic self; I felt more like a floater, belonging in two places at once—or belonging nowhere, feeling obligated to no specific place. Since neither place is my only home, I don’t need either of them to be my everything. I no longer demand perfection from any one town. And anyway, each place achieves its own perfection on its own, without me hanging around trying to make something out of what sometimes can feel like nothing.

I wasn’t feeling sentimental during this visit; I had no desire to visit my old haunts like a ghost. My memories didn’t capture me, because I have a present now and am not pining over the past. London has enabled me to be the person that I feel I am meant to be, while I still hold within me, at my core, a sense of my hometown. ♦

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15 Comments

  • martaosbourne November 13th, 2013 7:32 PM

    oh my god naomi that was beautiful

  • Maki Unicorn November 13th, 2013 9:25 PM

    i noticed that many american/english/australian girls visit a psychologist on a regular basis. While in Russia it’s not common at all. i find it pretty interesting.

    http://dinosaurvsshark.blogspot.jp/

  • charlottemh November 13th, 2013 10:03 PM

    I love everything that you write Naomi! Largely because I relate to basically everything that you write about, having moved from my hometown to a much bigger and exciting city for uni. And your pieces about going home to your parents and hometown is exactly how I felt.
    Thank you for putting it into words :)

  • Tangerine November 13th, 2013 10:26 PM

    I relate to Katherine’s entry very much. My depression symptoms have really been acting up this year, and more than ever, the one that is driving me nuts is “fog brain.” It’s nearly impossible to read anything, even for pleasure, and I feel like my brain is encased in tar.

  • julalondon November 13th, 2013 10:46 PM

    Naomi, i can totally relate to what you wrote about London; i used to lived there (wish i still would) and the sentence “London has enabled me to be the person that i feel i am meant to be, while i still hold within me, at my core, a sense of my hometown” sums up my feelings about that city perfectly!

  • Special_Snowflake November 13th, 2013 11:08 PM

    ” I am not controlled by my dark thoughts; they are a balloon tied to my wrist, following me wherever I go, but I am in the lead.”

    This is such a beautiful metaphor, thank you Britney <3

  • taratwinkle November 13th, 2013 11:28 PM

    I feel like that a lot right now Britney.. “I am probably my own worst enemy, and if I were left alone for a week, there would be nothing left of me—I would destroy myself.” Yes. Exactly.

  • Fasai November 14th, 2013 8:14 AM

    Dear Kathrine,

    i’m 24 years old and studying my master at uni. i used to read a lot too when i was younger but now i kind of stopped or it’s more 10-20 pages per week for pleasure. of course i have to read a lot for uni but still i feel that my brain is slowlier than it used to be.

    i realised that the main reasons is not my brain but the books i read. they’re more difficult so they take more time to read. it’s perfectly normal.

    i never went to a counselor and it sounds kind of drastic to me (but then again i’m from germany, it’s probably a culture-thing)

    well what i wanted to say. chin up. you seem alright and not lazy. give yourself a break. you shouldn’t force yourself to do something.

    greetings!

  • JessicaTree November 14th, 2013 9:25 AM

    I feel like I have so much in common with Naomi,
    I am at uni in London and my hometown is warwick in England so I can relate to a lot of your entries and its so good to see a different perspective from a similar experience. this post especially made me feel grounded. <3

  • Flossy Mae November 14th, 2013 12:31 PM

    I love that Naomi…I live in London and have done all my life as I’m yet to fly the nest, and it is literally the best place I know. Ever. The way you describe it, although I don’t exactly have a ‘hometown’ to compare it to, just fits.

  • sloththefifth November 14th, 2013 1:18 PM

    I’m living for Naomi’s diaries lately

  • RockHatesMiriam November 14th, 2013 5:16 PM

    NAOMI its like you can read my mind! I was thinking the exact same thing when i was in brick lane the other day…everything seem so close together in london, and there’s so much cool stuff happening!

    http://boredcouture.bigcartel.com/

  • eesmee November 14th, 2013 5:47 PM

    Naomi, I’m hoping to go to uni in London next year and your diaries are making me sooooo excited

  • Sarah Moon November 18th, 2013 4:04 AM

    Hey Britney,

    Loved this entry! I can really relate to everything you wrote about. I hope you continue feeling good and being creative :))