Monday, October 02, 2006

Falling into Contentment

As of July 3rd of this year, I had lived in Podunk for 11 years. It’s getting closer to the point that I had dreaded: Soon I will have lived here longer than I did in California. Which means people might possibly expect me to consider this my home state.

For 10 of those 11 years, that was a scary thought. I was one of those annoying people that spent every breath talking about how I was going to get the hell out of here the day after graduation. And even though I did, it was only for a week’s vacation. This wasn’t supposed to be home. More of a launch pad than anything else. I wanted to go to college in Minnesota because a) it was way cheaper than San Diego State and b) supposedly it’s easier to get a job when you have a degree from a Midwest school. Something about the work ethic. I was going to go to college, get my degree and head back West. Then I met Country Boy and he was all “boo! California is for sissies! I can’t do my ‘mighty hunter’ thing out there!” and I replied “sure, pookie-bear, whatever you say. I looooooove you!” with stars in my eyes.

I imagine that there are people who knew me in high school that snicker behind their backs because of this domesticity I’ve fallen into. Heck, I wasn’t even planning on getting married. But I guess all of it means that our plans aren’t always the best plans. Because right now I can’t imagine my life any other way.

As for considering this my home state, I fell into a bit of contentment as the heat of summer melted away into the crispness of fall. My home state never afforded the joy of watching such drastic changes of season. It makes me relish in every heat wave (not without complaining, but when it’s 90 with 100% humidity, I think one is allowed some whining) because I know that there is going to be a day in the middle of January when I long for just ONE day above zero. Just like the days in the summer when I wish for a freeze to get rid of the mosquitoes.

And on Saturday, as I walked through a park with my little man, I realized how much I love fall. I love the way the leaves crunch underneath our feet. I love making them a leaf pile to jump in. And I love the way even the sky changes color.

I started to look forward to the silent winter nights. Nights when it’s just barely above freezing and the air is still. The snow looks like someone has sprinkled glitter on my lawn. And I wrap my coat tighter around myself and take a deep breath. And it feels good.

So maybe this is my home. And maybe—just maybe—I’m finally at a place where I’m OK with that.


Elleoz said...

I know exactly how you feel. I am originally from Ohio, and now live in SC. However, I went to school in the applachian mountains. We don't have a big difference in seasons here and I so miss that. I might snow once a year, and that's only an inch or two.

I miss the snow and the crisp fall nights. But fall is definately my fave time of year.

Jenny said...

I never realized how much my tiny kick town was a part of me until I moved to the big city.

Now I miss the little things so much.

RWA said...

I've never been to Minnesota, but I have been to California. I loved it there - and I wanted to move out there after just a week.

But, here I am, still in Alabama, where it rarely snows, it's unbearably humid in the summer, and this week the temperature is back in the mid to upper 80's.

Oh well...

ficklechick said...

It sounds like heaven to me! I'm in California so I know what you mean about the lack of seasons. :(

Where in CA did you live?

Meg said...

As I listen to the Packers in New York City, having forbidden my roomie to even SPEAK to me unless she hears commercials, I know what it's like to miss out on home.

But you also have your mighty hunter. Mine felt the need to profess his love at 26, when I had my job and another life.

Enjoy your hunter. And your good cottage cheese-the kind out here is shit. Seriously, it's another texture completely---it's more like couscous than something that comes out of a cow.

Bean said...

I really enjoyed this post. It captured how odd but funny it is that we get slightly nervous when we find ourselves falling into contentment. I'm so happy for you, accepting your home, sounds like bliss to me too.

Battlerocker said...

Good post. I am about to move to a place I never thought I would go. I see it the same way you describe your situation eleven years ago. It's a great opprotunity, but for practical, non-sexy reasons. I hope that I will grow to love it the way you have.