We have adapted to life here as best as we can, I think. We remind ourselves of all the things we are thankful for – ultimately, having our family all together, which has huge advantages. We are blessed to have some great “ready-made” friends with whom to share our days; friends that my boys ask almost daily “when are we going to see them again?”. There are little things here and there that I daily add to my mental I’m-Thankful-to-be-Here-Because List, but I can so easily come up with a long list of things I miss. Part of our adaptation – our “coping” – is to make fun of suburban living. Grae and I amuse ourselves with this fairly often. We especially like to make fun of the silly names they come up with for each development like “Cedar Grove” – an open field with four sickly cedars planted in front of the sign, or other such humorous imaginations.
What do I miss? I miss the sun-shiny winter days and lots of blue sky! I miss the dark, cold nights where you walk outside and are taken aback by the brightness of the stars. I miss the wolves howling and the owls hooting. I miss the occasional northern lights (aurora borealis). I miss our friends, and more than just individual friends – each an important contributor to – the sense of community. I am realizing how rare this seems to be no matter who I quiz about it. I miss having the “go-to” house, the drop-in place. I miss having the space for big bonfires and lots of adults and kids. I miss dreaming about what to plant in the garden in the spring and where to start a living willow house. I miss taking my own garbage to the dump. I miss knowing the people that sell the beef, the chicken, the rabbits, the eggs, the goat milk, the honey. I miss my piano students. I miss letting my kids drive the van home on the country road. I miss rocks and evergreen trees. I miss the enthusiasm my kids had for going outside. I miss my own enthusiasm for the same. I miss living on a pass-through route common to many of our friends from hither and yon – a place to rest their weary heads for the night. I miss the proximity to family and being able to decide to visit our folks with relatively little planning (or expense). I miss neighbors that go way beyond the “welcome to the neighbor hood! (but we’ll never see you again)” mentality. I miss snow that stays all winter and ice the freezes until spring.
I am not complaining. I am as happy as I, a bush chick, can be here and there are many things I am very thankful for. I’m simply making a list of some of the things I miss, and the things I look forward to returning to.