Mean Reds and Homeless Cats


Home is a very interesting concept and I feel if you ask most people where their home is, they have a direct response. Sometimes it’s the place they grew up and other times it’s the place where their family is.

In the movie Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Holly Golightly (Audrey Hepburn) says something that got me thinking.

Holly Golightly: You know those days when you get the mean reds?

Paul Varjak: The mean reds, you mean like the blues?

Holly Golightly: No. The blues are because you're getting fat and maybe it's been raining too long, you're just sad that's all. The mean reds are horrible. Suddenly you're afraid and you don't know what you're afraid of. Do you ever get that feeling?

Paul Varjak: Sure.

Holly Golightly: Well, when I get it the only thing that does any good is to jump in a cab and go to Tiffany's. Calms me down right away. The quietness and the proud look of it; nothing very bad could happen to you there. If I could find a real-life place that'd make me feel like Tiffany's, then - then I'd buy some furniture and give the cat a name!

Some backstory: 

So Holly lives in an unfurnished apartment with a cat she calls “Cat”. Her reason being is that where she lived didn’t feel like home. It didn’t feel like the place you’d come home to after a long day at work or a place where you belonged. For her, it was just where she was and it lacked any real feeling.

She didn’t name the cat because in her eyes you can’t own people or things which is another blog post in itself, but what really sticks out to me is how she says “If I could find a real-life place that’d make me feel like Tiffany’s, then I’d buy some furniture and give the cat a name!”

If you asked me six years ago what “home” was, I probably would have said New Jersey without a doubt. West Orange, New Jersey, to be particular. It’s where I grew up and where I spent half my life so it must be home. Right?

Breaking it down a bit, I didn’t spend solely all my time in West Orange. The shitty part about having divorced parents is that you have two houses, bedrooms, sets of rules, holidays, etc. At times it feels like you’re living out of a suit case because of the constant back and forth between your parents’ houses. Once you get too comfortable on one side, it’s time to go to the other.

After I moved to NYC in 2013, I no longer felt like NJ was home. Part of me started missing Florida, but even then it wasn’t my home. 

For a moment I mistook my feelings for a guy as my feelings for home. Then I moved again and the feeling was all jumbled once again.

I love NJ and NYC. I think St. Petersburg, Florida, where I am now, is amazing. I live with my family and I love them so much. But quite frankly, I still don’t feel at home.

I understand how Holly feels. She refuses to get too comfortable because nothing feels right. She may love the city that she’s in, but it’s not enough for her to buy some furniture and give the cat a name.

Then she mentions Tiffany’s. She says how much loves Tiffany’s and how in her mind home should feel like how she feels at Tiffany’s.

For me? That’s Disney.

It sounds silly, but that’s what I imagine home to feel like and it’s why I call Disney my home. It’s the only physical place where everything feels right and I feel truly safe from anxiety, depression, and every other negative burden that I deal with.

It’s the place where I can be myself without judgment from others. Granted, I don’t care about judgment, but still knowing that I’m in such a judgment free zone feels great. It’s the one place I’m not constantly reminded of my skin and my hair and the political and social statement that I’m forced to carry with both.

I’m just Brittany. I’m not even Brittany J. or Brittany McCoy. Just Brittany.

That’s what I imagine home feels like and damn... when I feel that feeling about a different place then I will buy some furniture and set up a permanent residence there. But, until then, I’m going to make the best of not having a “home”.

I want to see the world and live out of a (designer) suitcase. I want to embrace new areas and cuisine and see what the world has to offer. I have no emotional attachments to staying in any one area, and I have no problem with packing up within the night and heading to my next location. I’m not going to nomad it, but I am going to take advantage of where I am in life right now.

I could stress the fact that I don’t feel like I have an emotional connection to any one place or that I don’t know where I permanently want to be, but I think there’s some beauty in it.

I think it’s wonderful that I don’t know where I want to be or quite frankly where the hell I’m meant to be. I haven’t found my place yet, or maybe I have and I just don’t know it yet. Maybe I’m meant to have ten different places!

All I do know for now is that I’m not looking to buy furniture or name any stray animals I found by a river. I just want to see where the world takes me, and as long as I remember I have that one place where I’m safe and can go at a moment’s notice, (that’s Disney) then I’m home.

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