I’ve come to find that oftentimes, the saying “home is where the heart is” is taken to the extreme. Something many people don’t know about me is that I am actually diagnosed with depression, anxiety, and OCD. However, I also happen to be an amazing actress; when I’m out in public, people only notice my symptoms if I’m feeling uncomfortable or really depressed. Since I have, in a way, forced myself to put on the facade of being okay when in public, I’ve literally pushed myself into a corner in regards to limiting the places where I can truly be myself—that corner being my room.

My room is undoubtedly the only place in the world where I feel genuinely comfortable. There’s no other place that I have ever been able to unconditionally be myself. It’s where I’ve cried (whether it be out of sadness or due to how attractive Kim Taehyung is), laughed the loudest, made important decisions, and, most importantly, it’s where i’ve grown up.

Whenever I show people my room for the first time, they always seem to stop and stare for a little while. I don’t really blame them—every now and then, even I have to stop and take everything in. Each wall is covered in what some may consider trash. To me, however, it’s my past and present. I decorate my room to reflect myself as an individual, and I just happen to be quite random. Almost anything and everything needed to understand me can be found on those four walls, from my favourite snacks to my best memories. Something I find quite interesting is that everyone who has entered my room actually finds it beautiful in some odd way. It baffles me that what I consider a literal map of what goes through my mind could be construed by others as creative. The only conclusion I can come to is that it must seem like some sort of abstract art. However, another thought that has come to mind—perhaps there is something about the rawness of it all that attracts people.

I’m so used to calling these four walls my mental home that the thought of going away to college next year makes me quite nervous. Sure, I can bring most of this stuff with me or just . . . go to the store and buy more chips. But I’ll be starting from scratch once I take everything down. Though it may not seem like it, there actually is some sort of organization into what goes where. To do everything all over again feels like I’d be abandoning both the person I was and who I have become; the person who put up the Minnie Mouse poster and the girl who put the Korean restaurant picture right next to it are completely different people.

I’ve considered leaving everything where it is when I leave for college. If I’m going to start from scratch, I might as well not destroy the original work in the process. After all, I’m going to need somewhere to sleep when I visit home.  

By Alana James

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