Home is McAlester, Oklahoma.
We moved to our first home in McAlester at 1011 North D Street in 1962, the summer before I started second grade. Just a year and a half later we moved two blocks away to 306 West Tyler, home for our family for the next twenty-eight years. I left this home to attend college, to live in Hong Kong while I served as a missionary, and to share an apartment just across town with my brother Karl. I returned to this home after my father's death and my brother's wedding in the summer of 1980. I was glad to spend the next two years with Mom, helping her adjust to life without my dad, her companion of almost forty years. I left this house in the summer of 1982 when I married and was thrilled that I would be living just two hours away in Tulsa, an easy drive back to my hometown.
My easy two hour drive to my hometown became an almost seven hour drive when we moved to Houston in 1986. Sometimes I flew and sometimes I drove, but my children became familiar and acquainted with my hometown of McAlester, Oklahoma. Even after my mother died in 1991, we continued our visits because my brother and his family lived there. With our move to Washington in 1997, our road trips ended and we always arrived by air, frequently with a stayover at my BFF's home in Tulsa. I have always loved going to McAlester, my hometown, where I feel the closeness, the love, and the tug of home.
That has changed with the death of my brother in December and my sister-in-law's move to Stillwater to live closer to her son and family (and I understand). We've had members of our immediate family in our hometown for almost sixty years.
How do you go home when there's no home to visit? Well, my visits will be less frequent, but I'm sure that my trips to Oklahoma will occasionally include a stop in McAlester. I still have a few friends, some extended family who live there, and so many family members at Oakhill. My parents, aunts and uncles, my grandparents, my great-grandparents and now my brother all have real estate at Oakhill Cemetery. I know lots of folks who no longer visit cemeteries, but I like going there and remembering the stories and basking in the memories of those I love. So I will be going home again, but I may have to stay in a hotel.