Well, its 1:41am here in New York and I have decided that I have become an insomniac. Lately, every time I lay down to go to sleep my brain fills and spills over with things that I don't think about during the day. Wedding planning. Those of you who have been in my shoes know that it has a tendency to consume you. (Well, if you are anal retentive like myself) So many thoughts and decisions. Lately it has been: "should I buy a head band for the reception or should I make one? Or should I even wear one at all?" This was exactly what was running through my head as I was tossing and turning right now, trying desperately to find just the right spot in my pillow and stick my left foot just far enough out of the covers to liberate my toes to move as they like without tickling Beau's feet, in the HOPES that sleep would eventually win the battle going on between aimless pondering and sweet sweet slumber that I have been sorely lacking. And then I think "what on earth am I going to do about flowers?" Which inevitably leads to: "OH MY GOSH I HAVEN'T EVEN LOOKED AT FLOWERS YET!" Which leads to: "SHIT! Those freaking invitations. WHERE is Sarah when I need her?" To: "Where I am I going to find a photographer?" To: "Is Beau ever going to decide what he wants the guys to wear? Time is running out here! I mean we only have 9 more months to go. WAIT! Make that 8 oh my gosh I think I am going to hyperventilate." Yes...where it a joyous occasion in every woman's life there are times I wish I would have hired a wedding planner. Would anyone like to take over the planning process for me? Any one? Any one?
But the more I think about it (and I think about every thing once I lay my head down for the night) I think what it boils down to is this: we are just not big city people and maybe the reason why I am so stressed lately is because I have so much to do and I am so far from home.
The first couple of weeks here were awesome. We we're settling in to this amazing apartment in the city...NEW YORK CITY of all places. We were getting furniture and making this little place in Queens home and then...and then Beau went back to the hospital and I realized just how far behind I was in the semester and how frantic it made me every time I felt like the internet wasn't going to work and how I hoped and PRAYED that God would give me the ambition to light a fire under my rear and actually get committed this semester. And with each day that I spent at home cleaning and preparing meals and "studying" (reading a little, taking a notes, then immersing myself in yet ANOTHER episode of Heroes) I grew increasingly aware how much of a "farm kid" (as my dad puts it) I really am.
Kenny Chesney has a song called "Where I Come From" that makes me think of home every time I hear it... "In the town where I was raised, the clocks tick and the cattle graze. Time passed with amazing grace, that's where I come from..." I miss home.
Don't get me wrong. I am blessed. I have gone so many places and seen some beautiful sights in my short life but no matter where I go and no matter how long I live in one place, "home" is in this little town in Iowa that is bordered by cornfields and cattle.
What I miss:
1) I miss my car. I miss that at home we could be self reliant. We could jump in the car and go where ever we wanted, when ever we wanted and not have to rely on some other transportation that ran when it wanted, IF it wanted.
2) I miss cheap groceries. I miss going to the grocery store and having everything you need. I miss having a clean grocery store where you can take in coupons and people know you (and have known you basically your entire life) and that it takes you two hours when you've only gone in for five things.
3) I miss frozen pizza.
4) I miss the sound of semis and the noises down at Pioneer during Harvest.
5) I miss going for walks at night where you don't have to take pepper spray.
6) I miss my dog.
7) I miss freedoms we have in Iowa that we don't have here.
8) I miss stars.
Things I love about Iowa
1) I love that "Iowa" means "beautiful country side" in Ioway
2) I love that we feed the whole world and aren't cocky about it but instead farmers go out there and do it because its in their blood. Because its what their father did, and his father before him.
3) I love that we aren't the South but have the same sort of hospitality. I love that in some parts of the state, a farmer will still come to the aid of his neighbors if a crop needs to be brought in or if a calf needs pulled.
4) I love that neighbors and friends get together for coffee just about anywhere.
5) I love Farmer's Market
6) I LOVE the smell of cow poop. To me it smells better than any perfume.
7) I LOVE my cows. Everything about them. And I miss them.
8) I love that when it rains it smells like like earth. That fresh and new smell. Like life is starting all over again, somewhere.
9) I love the sound the corn stalks make when the breeze passes through them.
10) I love that I can say I was a 4H member for years and embraced it fully and learned more and gained more friends than I could have ever imagined.
11) And I LOVE that every single town in Iowa, no matter how small, always finds something in themselves to celebrate about. Corn carnival, Lincoln Highway Day Parade, Clutier Days, county fairs...the list goes on and on.
What about the Midwest is there NOT to love?
Beau and I have been given so many gifts. The Lord has been so good to us. We have been blessed beyond words. We've have lived in some pretty cool places and seen a lot of neat things. We have been blessed with this amazing opportunity to come to this amazing city where thousands of people started their American dream, where we have made our dreams come true as well. We have swam in the warm salty waters off South Beach, we've lived on a tropical island, we've embraced New York.
Of all the places we've gone though, we started off two kids starting our own lives on some little college campus in Ames, IOWA. We met, became best friends, and fell in love. He is my heart, my soul, my everything. He changed my life forever when he asked me to be his wife on some warm summer night walk right there where I used to go sledding as a kid. He's a farm boy from Iowa and I have the farm life deep in my heart. No matter where we go, Iowa is always home to us and I can't wait to get back there. I am so blessed that my future husband has a heart that beats like mine. That wants the same things I do, and who loves "home" and values every thing about it as much as I do.
So yes, we have been blessed indeed. But I think the biggest blessing we have been given is to be able to say we we're born and raised in God's country, the most beautiful place I have ever seen. Little ole' Iowa, where life moves a whole lot slower, "where the clocks tick and the cattle graze." Yes, Iowa is where we come from.