I grew up a total city girl. I lived in major cities around the U.S. and in other beautiful countries around the world. By the time I was back in Salt Lake, I was anything but a country girl. This morning, I realized that I have become quite a different person than the one I thought I would always be. I mean if I’m being honest, when I moved to my current area, I thought I was going to die. The streets roll up by 10 p.m. You can’t buy beer on Sunday and all your neighbors go out playing in the mud on weekends and go hunting for fun.
For a wild child who did nothing but visit establishments of friends from underground bars to the highest class establishments of friends, I was accustomed to partying from Friday night until Sunday morning at minimal cost. Other than the self inflicted consequences, my life for all of my twenties and early thirties is a blur. I loved it. I loved the smells and sounds of the city. I loved the diversity of those around me, the little shops, book stores and hidden corners to have coffee where you could sit and people watch for hours on end.
When I moved to help take care of my mom and siblings, I thought I was going to die a dreadful, hillbilly death and get planted in the middle of nowhere where only snakes and birds visit. Life was over.
The initial area I moved to was truly a 2 mile by 2 mile town in the middle of nowhere. I thought my parents were nuts and I would never fit in or enjoy it. Eventually I started enjoying it even though I had to drive 45 minutes to the grocery store. Still, I remained a city girl. I went “home” every chance I got. I missed the city and my friends fiercely.
In 2000, my oldest son found his way into our lives. I had become part of this tiny community and loved my friends and neighbors. It was a second home but I didn’t see how I could raise a child there. I was sad that I was leaving all of my friends behind. That should have been a sign, but I swore that I was still a city girl. Couldn’t take that out of me.
In 2003 we bought our house in a bigger area. It still wasn’t the city but I was closer and I could shop and see a doctor in the same town. Even so, I still missed home and my friends in the city. That was then.
My point to all of this rambling is I realized yesterday for the first time in a very long time, just how much I love living where I do. When I wake up in the morning, the site outside of my front door is breath taking. You can see the mountains up close and personal. This morning you could see the light dust of snow creeping down the sides while the tops of them were packed with a beautiful white coat that just glistened. It made me think of how much I love summer time. That’s where I go to find solace in the chaos. I can hike all day or find a grassy knoll to just sit and mull things over in the quiet. Sometimes I sit and don’t think about a thing. I listen to all of things that we forget about. Living 5 minutes from such a beautiful, peaceful place is like heaven to me.
While on the drive to take the kids to work, I took in every ounce of beauty around me. There was no hustle and bustle. Just quiet. Driving home past the fields, I thought about the local farmers and how hard they work. Their dedication. Their strength and the sacrifices they make to provide a living for their families. The pride they have in the generations of keeping business in the family.
I realized that almost every house I passed I wondered how that family was doing. I know just about everyone and I genuinely care about each of them. Even the ones who have the a-hole syndrome. Our space is growing fast and things will change. There will be many I don’t know. Things will get alot more like the city which, in the past would have made me smile but thinking ahead, I will be sad to lose what we have in this very moment. Right now a traffic jam is a dozen cars at most. Most of the time wherever you go people smile and say hi (except Walmart, that place is a zoo.) It will be harder to find the quiet places I like to go and think and write. I will have to share alot more of “my” secret hideaways in the canyon. Change is coming and it’s coming fast and I hate change.
I still miss my city friends and the things that were special to me. I don’t miss life going past in a blur. I don’t miss the bad air, the noise and confusion or the crazy traffic jams. I don’t miss all of the crime and gangs. We have some here of course, but it’s very little. I guess other than people, I really don’t miss much about the city. I enjoy visiting on occasion and the special places and memories but the best part of going there is coming home.
I will always be my rowdy, metal head self who has now integrated country music and small town life but a city girl I am not. I am a country girl who loves the simple things in life and the difference in who I have become.
So much for never changing. Everything happens for a reason in our lives from the people we cross paths with in life to places we go and things we do. At the end of the day, I am so very blessed to be where I am and enjoy the way of life. I enjoy all of the small town feelings and beauty around me. I guess point proven, never say never and don’t get things set in your mind because change does happen.
I love being a country girl. Wouldn’t change a thing.
Be true to yourself regardless of where life takes you. Change is good for us even though some of us fight it. Listen for the things you aren’t hearing. Love life and people unconditionally. Be a decent human no matter what life throws at you. Those are the things in this life that matter most. The rest is just stuff.
More Love. Less Hate. H