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Home- Interview with Perri McGillivray

Questions by Selina Wells

S: First and foremost, I want to say I loved your transition piece. To be honest, I teared up quite a bit throughout the reading. Since January’s theme was on Transitions, how did your childhood home come to mind? When you think of transitions how would you define it?

P: Oh thank you! Honestly, I was really unsure of what I was going to write about until I spoke to my friend and she told me about how things ending doesn’t mean they’re gone. It just kind of clicked after that. I got home and immediately wrote that down with a few snippets that I wanted to include in my blog post. When I think of transitions I think of marked change. We’re always changing and growing; life is a constant and fluid pattern of change. Transitions, to me, are those moments or changes that you can look at and see a clear before and after.

S: I love the way you described your childhood home so vividly which really helps readers to understand how important it was. How were you able to pick only a few memories out of what could possibly be hundreds? Is there a moment that is your all time favorite memory when you think back on your childhood home?

P: It was hard. I ended up just closing my eyes and letting the first things that came to mind onto the paper. I have so many memories of my home and the more I let myself think the more I can come up with. As far as my favorite memory, there’s so many to choose from. Like I said, we often had other family or friends living with us at different points in time. If I had to choose, I’d say my favorite memory would be the huge dinners we’d all have together. They were always so loud and it was nice to gather everyone in the house together for a meal.

S: You mention both your reasons for loving and hating change. At this moment, which would you choose and why?

P: At this moment, I think I’m actually sitting in a neutral space. I don’t hate change, that’s for sure. I understand that it is a necessary part of life and growth, and I’m so grateful for what change has brought into my world. At the same time, I’m not rushing to change anything right now. I’m very happy where I’m at at the moment and I’d like to just sit in this space and enjoy my life as it is in the present. I feel like I’m not in survival mode for the first time in years. However, if change happens to come along sooner than I’m expecting, I’m just as happy to see where it takes me!

S: In your writing, you mention shutting off the bad emotions and purposefully locking them away. How are you breaking the habit? Are there any tools or habits you can share with our readers?

P: Ahhh this is a hard one for me, even now. It’s such an ingrained habit at this point. It’s all about practice. When I know something hurts and I find myself automatically trying to turn it off, I stop myself and hold onto the feeling. Depending on where I am, I’ll make a conscious decision to save it for later, but I try to make time to allow myself to feel whatever is upsetting me. I think if you’re having trouble allowing yourself to feel negative emotions, I would recommend finding somewhere that you feel safe and closing your eyes and just sitting with it for a few seconds. As you practice, you’ll be able to sit with it longer, but even just starting is already a huge improvement to locking those feelings away.

S: The last move was an easier transition than previous ones because you are carrying your childhood home close to you. This may be a cheesy and cliché question but is home truly where the heart is?

P: Short answer: yes. But I think it’s a little more complicated than that. My heart is with my family, my heart is with my friends, and my heart is with my cats. However, even when I was living with my family or living alone with my cats, I still couldn’t find that sense of “home” that I was looking for. I think home is more about what it makes your heart feel. And that can be different for everyone. For me, home is where I feel safe. It’s a place where I can take off all the masks I wear throughout the day and just be in my element surrounded by things and people that I love.

S: Since the new and old memories are blending together, do you think it is easier to let go of your childhood home because you’re still in proximity of the things and people that lived there as well? And making new memories with them?

P: Yes and no. It’s a little like exposure therapy I think. The memories of my childhood home seem less daunting and distant since I am now surrounded by furniture and people that used to be in it. At the same time, I don’t think I’ll ever fully let go of my childhood home. I’m a sentimental person, and that home was incredibly important to me as I was growing up. I think a part of me will always be a little sad about the home that I lost. That’s okay though. I’m learning to live with that sadness without letting it detract from my life in the present.

S: Without further ado, where can our audience find you?

P: You can find me on Instagram @pocketualpieces or here at LYF! Thanks for reading!

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