I work with a lot of children who live in foster homes. Some of my children have moved multiple times. In my art therapy studio, we make a lot of homes. Homes for animals, us, and dolls. Is it necessary to feel ‘at home’ where you live in order to evolve? Can our roots grow anywhere? Can we feel ‘at home’ in any environment, with any people, in any conditions? Home often has cultural, societal, familial, political connections characterized by family, and memories that translate into feelings of safety and love. When moving to a new place, one often feels in a state of limbo; both excited about the new possibilities and alien in the new home. One could feel like tourist, imposter, outsider, or exile. Salman Rushdie in Step Across This Line (2002) writes “the human dream of leaving. a dream at least as powerful as its countervailing dream of roots . . is the tension between these two dreams.” (p. 13) When we move to a new place we live in this tension. Will that tension turn into a trauma, or new possibilities for growth and healing? It could go in many directions: ‘How does living in a city that does or does not feel like one’s ‘home’ affect you? Can people thrive in countries, cities, houses in which they do not feel at home? What does it mean to be without home? Is it necessary to feel ‘at home’ where one lives to be ‘at home’ in one’s life experience? What is a home? What is home to you?
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- Karen Wallace
- Karen Wallace M.Ed. BCATR is an art therapist, artist, and art instructor living and working in Regina SK. Canada. She has a private practice with adults and children and specializes in depression, trauma, life transition and abuse work. She facilitates art therapy, creativity and art groups. She teaches internationally. She shows her mixed media art in galleries in Regina, Victoria B.C. and the Gulf Islands. Karen is known for her enthusiastic and dynamic teaching style. Her workshops are rich, playful and creative. Karen’s art work is a reflection of her art therapy work. She expresses her love of nature, her practice of Buddhism and her family in her art. Web site: www.islandnet.com/~kwallace