Monday, November 21, 2011

i won't be home for christmas

As the title of this post says, I won't be coming home for Christmas this year.

It was never supposed to be like this. I was going to be home every Christmas for tamales and toothbrushes in my stocking. I would be there for the annual family picture by the tree on Christmas morning. I would be there when Dad's side of the family visited every other year.

Moving away has brought so many good things that I almost regret bringing up the ones I don't like. The things I've missed out on since I've been in Washington. I missed my little sister's graduation. I missed birthdays. I haven't been home for Thanksgiving since 2007, and for Christmas since 2008. I missed Scott's voice changing and him getting WAY tall (two things that surprise me each and every time I come home). I miss out on oyster roasts at Granddaddy and Grandmama's the day after Thanksgiving. I miss eating Frogmore stew over newspaper and shucking oysters. I miss the Night on the Town and Water Festival, Beaufort events I've always loved. I miss signs for boiled peanuts on the side of the road. I miss Southern drawls.

That isn't to say that I don't like where i am right now. I do. I really do like the West. I like snow (until January... then I don't like it at all). I like that there are beautiful lakes and magnificent mountains and trees. This is a beautiful state. It's very grand. I love this place because it's my life right now. If I had not come to this place, I would not be married. I would have missed out on wonderful friendships, a great school and a church that tops every other church (does everyone say that about their church?).

It hasn't been a hard transition from Beaufort to Spokane, but they really have been two different lives. When I would come back to Beaufort, Spokane seemed like a place I'd merely dreamed about. Now it's home, but not in the same way home is. Home is marsh and beach and salty air. It's where I'm from and it's in my blood. It was the place I was raised; Spokane is the place where I grew; it's where I live.  But I've learned how to support myself, pay rent, do a job interview, make new friends "from scratch", be a wife, and more about myself here than any other place.

I digress. The point was that I won't be home for the holidays. The truth is that I'm sad about that. The beginning of December will mark one year since I have been back to visit and see my family. I can hardly believe that twelve months have passed so suddenly. This time of year makes me miss the things I once took for granted: warm little puppy bodies snuggled next to me, a green Christmas, Mexican food, the aforementioned oyster roast.

Yes, I'm feeling nostalgic and perhaps even a little bit homesick. I'm not sure I can help it this time of year.
This is a Carolina Christmas - Christmas tree hunting with the siblings at Lowes in 60 degree weather...

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