Beyond the dictionary: Home


The Magnet Tribune: Draw by VMT art student

A drawing of a house.

Zoe Alvarez, Staff writer

Whether the word home is used as a physical structure, a place where people feel safe, or a person in which one will confide in, it houses various meanings.

Home, according to Merriam-Webster , is “one’s place of residence.” This use of the word home is rather on the physical structure side. Synonyms of the physical use of the word home include house, residence, property and more. Common phrases are “my humble adobe”, “my casa is tu casa”, “my place”, and “my crib”. Home and house are two terms most commonly used by people. Both are structures containing a roof, windows, walls, and doors in which people seek shelter. This is the physical place where people sleep, eat, bathe, and relax. This physical-structured residence is where a newly wed couple moves into to solidify their bond. It is the structure where a married couple welcomes their newly born child. It is within the four walls and roof where the child begins to grow up and live alongside their parents. This is the physical place where the parent’s host family gatherings, where the child invites friends for a “hang out” and much more.

A popular phrase used by many is “my home away from home.” These can range from an employee’s office in which they spend most of his time to a band hall where a fine art student spends the majority of their week in. These homes away from home are considered like this due to the time spent, the memories made, the feeling of safety, or even a place where one will always prefer to be. For example, to consider a band hall one’s home away from home, the band hall must be a place where the person is always at. They may choose to hang out with friends in the morning while practicing. They then have their fine arts class such as band, orchestra, or choir. They then conclude their day with after school rehearsals. While spending time in the band hall, they then develop memories from certain times they spent time with friends, had a great rehearsal, enjoyed class or more. After a year or even a few months, they will find the band hall to be a safe place. For example, they may feel the liberty to leave their personal belongings behind along with their instrument cases due to the fact that they have developed a trusting bond with the building itself and the people there. These are occurrences that are similar to those of one’s actual home.

Home doesn’t necessarily require a roof and four walls; it can be as simple as a person. This person can be one’s lover, best friend, or family. No matter where one may be, they will always find shelter with that specific person. These people share a love so strong they simple do not require a physical structure of a house, but rather they find their home with each other. These are the people who follow their partners all over the world for travel, career, or whatever it may be but do not mind leaving house after house due to the fact that their home is their partner.

A safe place is where one finds peace, a proper place to relax and unwind. Home is the place in which after a long tedious day of work, a person can confide within those walls and seek rest. Home is where a mother feels safe with her children and alongside her spouse. At home people feel at ease to speak their minds. They share their opinions, dramas, dreams, secrets, and more without fear of the outside world’s judgment or attention. It is the place where one will dance like no one is looking, eat ribs and wings without worrying about others seeing the BBQ all over their faces, wear whatever clothing they please and more. Home is where people live out their personalities unnerved due to the fact that they are safe behind their house’s walls far away from the evil eyes and words of society.

With its various denotations such as home being another place other than a physical house, home being a person rather than a house, and home being a safe place, it obvious that home is much more than four walls and a roof. Many can see that there really is “no place like home.”