Monday, March 23, 2009

A funny thing happened down in Georgia . . .

. . . we became a family.

The last week of July/first week of August will mark 16 years for us living in Georgia. The varying dates are because my husband moved down the week before I did because I had to finish my internship in Bluefield.

I try to remember what those young people were thinking way back then. I was 22 and my husband was 24. We had only been married about 10 months. I can hardly remember those people. So much has happened and changed us since then.

I do know we felt limited by options in WV and I do know we saw moving to Georgia as a grand adventure. Not to say we took the decision lightly. We went back and forth about it for MONTHS! We listed pros and cons. We discussed our options. We made ourselves sick talking about it.

And then we jumped.

I had a deal with my husband. I told him I would stay in Georgia for five years and then I wanted to move back to WV.

Truthfully, I wanted to move back to WV after the first month. And I didn't even want to give Georgia a shot.

In fact (and I'll be quite honest here), I wasn't sure our marriage would survive our move to Georgia. We had a hard few years. Yeah, years. It wasn't always talked about, but it was always in the background. I wanted to give up and move back to WV. He thought we should stay and make it work here.

The best piece of advice my mother ever gave me when I called her (you should have seen the long distance phone bills!) and cried and cried about wanting to move back home was this: Your place is with your husband. Your home is with him now.

Yesterday, sitting on the front porch, I thought about all of that. I thought about the years living as a WV Expat in another state. I thought about how much I missed by not living in WV with family. My husband loves WV as much as I do, so it's something we've discussed before.

But what I was watching from my front porch made me realize I wouldn't change a thing. My husband was down in the yard with my son and 5 of my son's friends from the neighborhood. They were playing touch football. It a was beautiful day. It was an even more beautiful moment.

We've had so many experiences here. We've built a life here. I would have never believed it 16 years ago, but Georgia really is our home. I'll always love WV, of course. It's our heritage; it's where our family is. But Georgia is our home.

It's quite a revelation to me that home is where your history is. That's why it was so hard to leave WV. My childhood was there and that was the only history I had.

Now that my husband and I are going on 17 years of marriage, my history is somewhere else.

There are some bittersweet elements to that, but I choose to focus on the sweet.


Evil Twin's Wife said...

I love GA and it's my hope to return there myself. :-)Isn't that funny? I'm where you would like to be, you're where I would like to be... Oh well, we can live vicariously through each other. :-)

Tina said...

ETW, I think that is living proof that the grass is always greener mentality is alive and well!

A. said...

I'm sorry, I can't believe I didn't comment on this. I thought it was a wonderful post.

It is hard sometimes to realize what we have right where we are is maybe where we are meant to be. It certainly gives me hope!