It’s hard to say which term sounds best – the act of going home, being at home and staying there to enjoy its comforts and to avoid anything challenging that may be outside the front door, or coming home or heading home after a long day in the city, at the office, or away on business? All are good.
Because going home and staying home create such pleasant emotions in us – all of us – aging in place is highly desirable as well. People like their homes and want to remain living in them as long a physically possible. For many, this is the rest of their lives.
As professionals, we get to provide a valuable service by helping people remain in their homes for as long as they desire without any imminent thoughts of needing to leave. For those of us who participate in this worthwhile endeavor, it is very rewarding.
After being away from home for a day (at the office, attending a seminar or meeting, or being out-of-town), or traveling for a few days, a week, or longer, the thoughts of both going home when boarding the plane or train, or getting in the car for the journey home (no matter how many miles need to be traveled or who is driving) and then coming home from the airport or station, or pulling into the driveway, are very comforting.
There is no place like home. It’s that simple. This is one of life’s basic truths. Just ask Dorothy in the “Wizard of Oz” or whoever stitched that sampler that proclaims “Home Sweet Home” that many people have displayed in their homes. Notice, we aren’t talking about houses which are structures and buildings but homes which are part of the lives of the people that live in them.
Many people make careers of selling homes, and people love shopping for and buying homes. Nevertheless, there is a tremendous interest and need – and it continues to grow – for people to remodel, renovate, and reconfigure the homes they already have to match their changing lifestyles or anticipate what they might need in the future. While we may begin with the actual structures – the houses – our main business is creating safe, attractive, comfortable, convenient, accessible, visitable, maneuverable, and quite enjoyable homes for the people who live in them.
The homes we live in personally, and those we help our clients and the general public to enjoy over time – through education and actual services we provide – are our sanctuaries – our retreats. Whenever we leave the comforts of home – where we are free to be ourselves whether we are dressed up or wearing our pajamas and whether or not our hair is combed – and venture out into the world, we encounter challenges in one form or another. We might just be going for a walk, a leisurely bike ride, or a simple jog around the block before returning home. We might be going shopping or to the park to play tennis or pickleball. We might be going to the office. Maybe we are going out for a sandwich or to have dinner. Regardless, there are many perils and challenges that we encounter when we are away from home. Our homes offer a reasonable degree of protection that the world does not.
Sometimes our homes present challenges and difficulties to us as well – because of clutter, the way items are organized (or not organized), we have accumulated too much stuff, or we have used all of the available space. Accidents, burns, and falls do happen in the home – unfortunately. We need to do all we can in our own homes and with our clients to minimize those risks.
“Home” is a great word. Home means security, comfort, a place to return to after we have been in the outside world (subjected to all the world has to throw at us), a nurturing place, a private place, and so much more. It’s good to be home again after any absence from it (even a few hours), and it’s good to be in the business of creating sound living environments for people.
There’s no reason for people to give up the homes they have now and search for something else when we can help make those homes even more comfortable and well-suited for them. People really can spend a lifetime in their current homes if they so desire.