Sunday, August 15, 2010

Maybe I'm Not So Small Town After All

Over the course of the last few months, I've been doing a lot of thinking -- about what I want for myself, where I see myself in the up coming years, how I want to be spending my time. I've never been one for life lists, time lines, or anything of that sort instead preferring to take life as it comes, one hurdle at a time. I tend to figure out what works and what doesn't, then go from there.

Lately one aspect of life that hasn't been working for me is small town life. What I want right now is to leave, to try my hand a bigger city life, to surround myself with culture and diversity. While I do love my small town and its worked for me for a large part of my life, over the past few years I've changed. My ideals and beliefs don't exactly fit the small town mentality any more. They never really did, but lately the chasm feels like its grown wider, deeper.

Spending time with my thirteen and fifteen year old cousins has changed the way I think about my small town as well. I look at them and see so much potential, they deserve so much more than what our small town and little valley can give them or provide them with. I want them to explore, to not define themselves by small town standards, to think bigger ideas and have more open minds. I don't want/need them to agree with my ways of thinking, but I hope that they can learn to be open minded enough to at least consider other ideas, other ways of thinking--not just the conservative close mindedness we've been raised on and runs rampant in our small town. If I want all that for them, what kind of example am I setting for them by staying? Its almost like I'm saying I want all this for you, but don't value myself enough to get myself out of the unhappy situation I'm in.

I want them to learn that life is so much bigger than the hills that we're surrounded by on a daily basis. I need to move away and on for so many reasons. I drive though my small town and am practically overwhelmed with the fact that I don't belong here anymore, that I'm ready for a bigger life, if that makes any sense.

I'm working on making changes, accepting the feelings I've been having lately and searching for the opportunity that will let me take that next big step. While it will always remain true that I'm from a small town, the truth is, I'm not really such a small town girl after all.