Almost exactly two years ago, we packed up our little home and moved away from Savannah to the Upstate of South Carolina.
A job change sent us scrambling, but we serve a mighty God who blessed us quickly and we were without a job for under two weeks before a new one was handed to us. A new one that was four and a half hours away from all of our friends, most of our family, the church we loved, and the first house that was home to our family of three.
It was the house we brought our very longed for baby home too, the house we gave our lives to Christ in, the house where our marriage grew as our individual faiths grew.
It was home.
I can still remember coming to this town two years ago and thinking "this will never feel like home". I distinctly remember pulling up to a busy intersection and thinking how weird it looked and how this town just didn't look like one I could feel truly comfortable in. It felt so foreign to me.
Now? that intersection is the last intersection before I am home. I know it like the back of my hand. Our neighborhood pharmacy sits on one corner. It's where we've made many late night (and for Mr. P) early morning runs for diapers and milk and chocolate.
On the other corner is my cut through to work when the traffic is out of control. On the other corner is the QT they've been building forever that I was beyond excited for it to open and bring me daily $.49 drinks.
That intersection is now as familiar to me as breathing. I know it's a guarantee that someone will run the light. That someone else will make a funny left and back up traffic. That if I get through that intersection, I'm home. I'm back with my people.
And just like that intersection, this town has become familiar to me. I've fallen in love with the area. The hills, the lake, the weather. I've fallen in love with the small town traditions; the Christmas parade, the Farmer's Market, the tree lighting, and even the Block Party (although I think I just love the idea of the Block Party since we've yet to go to one. This week it's happening).
Moving to this town gave me a shot at my dream of SAHM'dom and then gave me the chance to realize that wasn't for me. It gave me an awesome part time job that still left me plenty of time with my sweet girl but also introduced me to some amazing coworkers who quickly became friends.
This town holds my daughter's school in which inside holds her sweet "friends" (her words not mine). Where a sweet teacher sent me daily text pictures of my girl and taught her her "model face". Where three little girls went from schoolmates to the best of friends. Where my child soared in learning and in her social life.
This town lead us to a church where we've seen God do some amazing things. Not only in the lives of people in our community, but in our own life. We've been through a lot these last couple of years and through it all, we've seen our faith grow by leaps and bounds. Having a church we both love and look forward to attending each week has helped that growth so, so much.
I found amazing friends here. One of my closest friends in the world lives here and it breaks my heart to leave her. In such a short time, we became like sisters with that kind of comfortable friendship that takes no effort and is able to just be. I've made a good friend that I'm able to laugh with and cry with and just spend time with in yoga pants and flip flops because neither of us care to put on airs (Tiff you know I'm talking about you!). I've made a friend that I can sit and talk with for hours upon hours without a single lull in the conversation because we both have that much to say and truly enjoy what the other is saying.
This town went from being a spot on the map that I didn't even know existed to home. Our home. I've grown in ways I couldn't have even imagined here as has my family. And while it absolutely breaks my heart to leave here, I know we'll be back and there will be numerous visits. I've got people here now. People I'm invested in. People I love.
I know we're following God's will in this move and that's why I know it will work out. I'll lick my wounds for a little while and I'll cry a lot, but at the end of the day, I know where we head next will eventually become home. We'll eventually form new relationships and put down new roots. Plus? I'm heading off with my people. And if there's one thing I've learned in my (almost, sob) thirty years, it's that home isn't a building. It's where your heart is. And my heart is with my people; Mr. P and BG (and even the pets). So let's do this.