Being eight and a third culture kid (TCK) is definitely an interesting life. The other day I was thinking about the idea of home. It always amused me how growing up our 8 year old would always refer to hotel rooms as home... what does home really mean to someone who has lived as varied a life as he has. Being born in the Isle of Man, he lived just outside of Douglas for a year. After which he moved to Kazakhstan where he lived in two different houses in Almaty. He then moved to Qatar where he also lived in two different houses in Doha. This was followed by a move to China where he lived in 3 different houses in Nanjing and he is now on home number nine in a new city in the north if china.
He listens to us talking about going home in the summer as we head back to Ireland for the holidays each year. When I asked him where is home? He answered: home is anywhere you bring me mama.
He doesn't have a sense of identity like I do. He will tell you he is Irish if you ask him his nationality but in reality he knows very little about being Irish. To him Ireland is a place where he doesn't have to go to school, he is allowed to watch TV and he gets taken out for ice-creams by Nana and Grandpa. He has never lived there. Eventually I suspect he will develop his own unique sense of identity grasping from both his father and myself and whatever he sees presented around. Home is not a physical place for him. When he gets older and comes to visit us wherever we will be, he will not have childhood memories of that place. However this does not mean he will not have childhood memories. And although he leads somewhat of a transient lifestyle now, his memories with us his family, are built on our experiences together wherever that might be. Priceless!