dallas had become stifling, a garrote for dreams-dreams of a life that would be about so much more than what that city had to offer-the endless pursuit of materialism, of popularity, and, as far as i could tell, nothingness. i was eager for an adventure, something that would and could catapult me into a hybrid of the dallas existence. there was also jon.
jon and i had been dating/not dating/interested in each other/not interested in each other for several years; shortly after the dismantle of hi-fi drowning and all the drama that surrounded the contentions that led to it, he hugged me farewell and set off in his truck for the great northwest. i remained in dallas for another year, completely unsure what and where the next step would be for me, the one thing i was most certain of was Change.
Change came in the form of love. the quandary that was our relationship, after nearly a year apart, had transformed itself into, for jon, intention about me- intention for devotion, and settled affection. i was more than receptive to this development, and after a harrowing act on jon's behalf to return to dallas to fetch me, i was off.
of course, the only thing one can expect is the unexpected, and that is exactly what oregon had in store for me. portland might have been an easier adjustment for someone (recently quasi-single and hip to the hipster scene) moving from a city like dallas, but with jon's no non-sense approach to EVERYTHING, we instead moved to a rural, small town in southern oregon where his sister lived and where we could rent a place for quite cheap which would provide us with the opportunity to finish up school and save some money. inject the unexpected. we arrived somewhere near the end of september and spent the following weeks turning a shit hole of an above garage apartment into something very livable. by mid-october i had a job cocktailing at a restaurant downtown and jon was back in the groove of the job he left when he came to save me from the humid throngs of dallas. our return to academia was planned for the coming spring. then in november the unexpected happened, and while it's been the most wonderful thing to have ever happened to me, it caught me by complete surprise: i was to become a Mommy.
since that moment the move to oregon became about something More than the More, it became about integrity, and that integrity has convoyed much wonderfulness and responsibility in mine and jons life. jon did finally make it back school a year and a half ago; i've yet to pursue anything past motherhood, i've made it a conscious effort to live this moment-the moment of my children being children.
and throughout the past six years i've learned a lot about myself-about my limits, like the fact i need to have sunshine by march-that nine months of rainy cold weather turns me into a very miserable being. i've discovered that music wasn't just something for my twenties-that i still crave the discovery and immersion of an orchestration of melody, harmony, rhythm, and timbre crafted in originality and done with great care, and that if i don't have it-if the need isn't meet-my disposition suffers greatly. i've realized i love the mountains, more than i ever could have anticipated-that the beauty of this place is magical, and that magic is like water for my soul. before living in oregon i didn't quite grasp how the magnitude of such a beautiful place can truly awe oneself about ones Creator-but i have learned with every new trail, each evening at the river, day at a mountain lake, and "sunday" drive we take, i steep in a regenerated level of astuteness about the greatness of the God i serve.
i left as a city girl fed up with the city, and six years later living in a small town in a valley surrounded by mountains, sure i'm still that city girl at heart, but i like to think i've embraced the northwest lifestyle and, if i had my way this weekend, i'd be backpacking in the Trinity Alps with not an extra change of clothes to my name, totally thrilled to be eating reconstituted freeze dried food later in the evening under a sky filled with stars, drinking treated water, and falling asleep curled up as tight as possible in my sleeping bag as tired and as happy as can be.