#30 on my 100 list::
I have lived in Montana, New Mexico, Utah, North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Wyoming, Louisiana, Tennessee and Maryland.
When I went to college in Utah from New Mexico my parents moved a short time later to the top of the state and I have only been back once to the town I grew up in after moving away from there. There is no draw to go back to Las Cruces only to just see where I grew up. I would love to walk in the church I went to my whole growing up years, my first elementary school, Ryan's hill behind our house, drive on the wee way (a dirt road by our first house that I would always say weee when it came to the bump, the road is probably paved by now), my high school, my friend Heather's house. I wonder if it is better to just keep the memory of what it was like in my mind.that is me with short hair, why didn't i appreciate those legs when i had them
I moved to Utah to go to college. I left for my mission from here, fell in love with my husband from here, stalked him around campus until he proposed to me, made so many life long friends here, started my marriage here, Utah is where I feel I started to discover me. Utah is where I started to learn how to be married. I have been back to Utah a handful of times but always for a wedding or an event and never by myself. I loved my time in Utah.
I served a mission for my church in North and South Dakota, Minnesota and Wyoming. I met amazing people, fell in love with flat lands. I discovered my spiritual side. I have such a tender place in my heart for the people there and the country there. I have never been back. Some day I hope to take my kids to Mt. Rushmore and have them name the presidents and then show them my Christmas card photo (yes can you believe I even sent a ton of Christmas cards on my mission) of me standing in front Mt. Rushmore at age 21.
My husband and I moved to New Orleans. We lived there 4 years. We loved New Orleans. We had our first daughter there, we made awesome couple friends, we counted every penny there, we fell in love with the south. driving out of that town that day we moved was really hard. I really cried. I have never been back.
We moved to Tennessee. We lived there 6 years. we had two more kids there. we confirmed that we do LOVE the south. we had the best neighbors any family could ask for. Jeff got smarter and I discovered that I was creative (who knew) We tested the strength of our marriage there and it held strong. We loved it there. Driving out of town that day was horrible, but I tried to keep it together for Annie Kate, I will never forget that last drive onto Hillsboro Road. We have been gone 2 years and have not been back.
We moved to Maryland 2 years ago. We have not wasted anytime diving into this place. We have met some INCREDIBLE people, given pieces of our heart here, discovered our love for history and travel and in 2 years there is a good chance we will move again. We love it here! I don't even want to think about my track record and must come back here.
So recently I told my husband that I feel like I am missing out on "the Going Back" part of life. I have loved every where I have lived and always dive in head first. But I never go back. I never get to come to town and run into friends that knew me when I was younger (this could be a secret blessing) or hear from and adult "I used to babysit you" show my kids this is where you mom went to school. I never get to hear "it has been so long" " we have missed you" " I can't believe you have kids" "You husband has gray hair" I feel like I just love everything about my life but I keep leaving it and don't get to "Go Back" and feel it again. It is started to leave a little hole in me. (thus why seeing terry a few weeks ago was so great for me)
So, when Jill and I were talking this winter about getting together I knew this was my chance to GO BACK! i get to spend the weekend with no kids, just friends. (something I have never done)
When I flew into Utah last night and saw the mountains, I got teary on the plane. I was just so excited to walk the same sidewalks as I did my freshman year and with my freshman roommates too - yea this is going to be fun. Even though I have been back to Utah, still a flood of memories came rushing in from my college life. (my freshman year was one of the best years of my life)
I also realize they don't have billboards on the side of the freeway where we live and I had forgotten about all the billboards on the side of the road on I15. It was great to drive on a freeway with NO TRAFFIC. I loved driving past all the mom and pop restaurants - something they don't really have where I live unless you go into the city. When I was renting my car there was a slew of other women here for women's conference as well and they all just looked like happy go lucky western, Mormon, moms - I can't describe what I mean by that but for myself that description will remind me of what I meant.
So here is to Going Back!