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home is where your heart is

Happy Wednesday! I hope everyone had a great 4th of July holiday! I spent the day getting reacclimated to Los Angeles after a very full Monday of traveling and a great Monday night seeing some improv and hanging out with friends. My Independence Day was spent writing today’s blog, going to a cookout with some friends, and ending the night watching fireworks on TV because Archy was too afraid of all the loud noises (totally fine, I loved the cuddles!).

I realized something about myself awhile ago that becomes ever more clear to me day by day. I grew up in a really great small town, but I’m not built for small town life anymore - and I haven’t been for awhile now. Don’t get me wrong - I loved being home and visiting the place I grew up, eating all the pizza and Wawa I could want - but I realize that although my parents’ house will always be home because that’s where my family lives, I’m very much a city girl now. I love all the hustle and the bustle and the opportunity to always have something to do. Home was relaxing, yes, but it quickly got boring. I realized just how much I love being able to go to the beach or go hiking or see some improv or perform or go to my gym up the street. Maybe one day I’ll want that small town kind of life, but I don’t see that happening for a very long time - if ever. And it’s okay. People live different kinds of lives because people are different!

All that being said, though, I don’t take things for granted. I’ve lost a lot of beautiful people in my life, so I really try to be present in every moment and enjoy everything that’s happening around me, especially when I’m home. Even while I was there, cleaning out my Mom Mom’s house in LBI - the midpoint of where she and her truest love Johnny used to meet - I was immediately thrown by how my Aunt Lynnie’s bedroom still smelled like her.

I’ve been helping my parents go through her things for awhile now because letting go is a process, so I’ve been used to seeing her things around the house: bags, jewelry, old photographs, little trinkets. But when I walked into her bedroom and it still smelled like her, it was like the loss hit me all over again. It stirred up so many memories and pulled me right back to being with her when I visited Germany to hugging her at my Pop Pop's funeral when I was a teenager to surprising her in the hospital when she was battling Cancer just around this time two years ago.

I cried and let myself feel that, but as soon as I let it all out, I felt an amazing sense of relief (similar to the relief I felt visiting Robert’s new school). I felt relief because I know that her love and all the things she taught me will live on in me and in all her family and her friends that she had an impact on in life.

Home is where you heart is, and home is also where you make it. It sounds cliche, but it’s true. I love the small town in which I grew up, and it will always hold a special place in my heart, but my heart isn’t there anymore. My parents have always supported and encouraged my dreams, and now my heart is in a city that pushes and challenges me to be my best and reach my full potential because this is the home of my individual life.

My parents came to see my show at DCM in New York City and all they could tell me was how proud they were and how amazed they were by all the people on Garage Band. It was great to hear that and to have them witness me doing what I love. And that’s why, although I hadn’t planned on staying home for as long as I did, I chose to stay the extra week. I got to help my parents sift through memories and see their reactions as they processed and coped, which were so strong and so beautiful. I am so lucky to have had such amazing people raise me, and that’s why I’ll always go home. Although it’s not really home anymore because my life is in LA, it’s still a big part of what made me into the person I am today.

And, since I did stay an extra week, I got to attend another wedding this past weekend, which I will write about next week! So stay tuned! Thank you so much for reading, and, as always, if you have any pressing questions or if you want to discuss something further with me, feel free to subscribe below or reach out to me on the “contact” page. I’m so grateful you're here and that I’ve been getting a lot of really challenging questions and even better feedback from a community all over the world. I couldn’t do this without you! So THANK YOU! I’m here for you, and I love hearing from you, too! You’re the best, and you have everything you need inside of you! Please believe it! Starve your ego, feed your soul - and follow your heart!

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