Monday, November 1, 2010

Home is where the heart is

Once when I was small, maybe five or so, I remember going shopping with my mom in a nearby city. We always went out of town for shopping, because our town was so small and didn't offer a lot.

I had recently learned about people in foreign countries and how they spoke different languages. I didn't really understand the concept of what a foreign country was, and anything outside my everyday world was foreign. A ten minute trip in the car felt like an eternity. So as far as I knew, we traveled to "foreign countries" to go shopping. So, on that particular shopping trip I was surprised that the people working in the stores could understand what my mom was saying. I wondered why they weren't speaking another language.

Now I look back and laugh at how small my world was, but as I'm looking down the barrel of a complete life change, I feel like I'm five years old again. I've only ever lived here, not just in the south, but in North Carolina. I was a child in the foothills and became an adult in the blue ridge mountains. I've never known anything else, and while I'm much older and wiser than that little girl out shopping with her mother, I can't help but feel like I'm about to embark on something completely foreign to me.

Don't get me wrong, I am so excited. Ever since Andy sent in his resume and cover letter I have felt completely at peace with this decision. There aren't a lot of times I can say I have felt this way. Once was when I made the decision of where to attend college, and I felt this way again on my wedding day. But I cried when my parents left me on move in day, and I cried on and off the whole day of my wedding. These big decisions are never easy because no matter how good they are, there is always some bad mixed in. Someone or something always seems to be left behind, and I've already shed a few tears as I've been saying goodbye to so many people I love and the only home I've ever known.

A few months back, my friend Jessie asked me what my definition of home was. The first thing out of my mouth was that Andy was my home. The second was my family. Andy and my family are my home, regardless of where I am, and that is something that has been true for me since I was a child. Not Andy, I didn't meet him until I was a teen, but the people I love have always played a big part in what makes me comfortable, and to me, home should always be comfortable.

So, since I'm taking part of my home with me and leaving a large part of it behind, I guess that means I'll have two homes.

In college, I once said to someone, "I'm going home for the weekend." They laughed at me and said, "Home? You mean to your parents?" I gave them a strange look and said, "Yes. That will always be my home."

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