There’s No Place Like “Home”

So I’ve been back from Oregon for a month now almost to the day. That means two things. 1. I’m a serious slacker who leaves her followers hanging big time after a major vacation and B. It’s time for another vacation. 😉

Hmm, where to start. I guess I’ll start at the beginning. One day, long ago, my mom meet my dad and they fell in love. Oh. That’s too far back you say? Okay, guess I’ll start with the vacation then.

The train ride out there was quite the experience. There was some stress in getting to the train station and then some uncertainty as to which car we should be on, but once we were on the train, things began to calm down. I’m happy to report that the kids were all fairly well behaved despite the four hour delay coming into Portland. I’m not so pleased to admit that they didn’t really play with the felt potato heads I made. Ah well. Live and learn I suppose.

The scenery as we came into the Washington/Oregon area was gorgeous. I nearly cried as I saw my first mountains and spotted pelicans for the first time. I was very surprised by the emotional response I was having.

It didn’t end there. Every aspect of our trip triggered something deep in me that I couldn’t quite put my finger on at first. Seeing the “Keep Portland Weird” billboard across from Voodoo Doughnuts, swimming at Foster Dam, puting my feet in the Pacific for the very first time, meeting the boyfriend’s amazing family and friends, and eating seafood so fresh that it was probably still swimming around the day before all elated me beyond reason. So I did what I always do. I self analyzed the heck out of it.

I realized that these extreme emotional responses stemmed from something that I never really had in Wisconsin. A feeling of belonging. Not as much in the communal sense, as I have had that in certain aspects here (even though it’s lacking quite a bit in my opinion) but in the sense of feeling like I fit in with my surroundings.

I was born and raised right here. Every place I’ve ever lived is within 25 minutes of anywhere else I’ve ever lived. It’s only been in the last couple years that I’ve even started to branch out and frequent other local cities. So, for a long while, this city was all I’ve known. And I’ve always hated it.

Don’t get me wrong, I’ve developed a new found appreciation for my city. I no longer totally despise it. Even with that new found appreciation, I still don’t feel like I fit here. I feel like a puzzle piece that someone crammed into a spot it doesn’t belong. It fits, sorta, but it’s not supposed to.

I never knew what to do about that feeling. I’ve known for a long time that I wanted to move away. The question was always where to though. I thought I had the answer once and my ex and I attempted to move to Kentucky. That didn’t work out so well (thankfully). My reasons for trying to move there were because he had family there and I liked it better than where we were living. I thought Kentucky was adorable, but I was never head-over-heels in love with it.

Enter Oregon, with its sexy waterfalls, luscious forests and majestic mountains. I never stood a chance. It was love at first sight for sure. The 8 days we had together were some of the best I’ve ever had. Alas, like all good things, it had to come to an end.

Today was a particularly rough day. I never knew someone could be so homesick for somewhere they’ve never actually lived. I often find myself daydreaming about moving out there, but today was horrible, so I was ready to pack up my hanky, tie it to a stick, and run away from here. I managed to resist the urge, but only just barely. I just have to keep telling myself only 13 more years….

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