Friday, March 30, 2012

Where Are You From?

After reading this post, which then directed me to this other post, I really got to thinking...where am I from?  Who am I from?  What am I from?

I am from battles waged with Nerf guns in a darkly-lit basement; late night summer games of hide-and-go seek tag; and juicy strawberries, tart rhubarb, and crunchy asparagas stolen from patches in the far reaches of the backyard.  I am from camping in the woods, carving our names into too-tall trees.

I am from a brick house, built during the Bicentennial.  I am from a wishing well that advertises our last name and houses baby birds.  I am from small bedrooms with old doors borrowed from homes I will never know.

I am from the overwhelmingly sweet smell of corn at the end of summer, the sting in your eyes and the green in your hair from too much time under water.  I am from the crisp crunch of the burnt grass on your bare feet.  I am from the crickets chirping, stars shining bright, with lightning bugs flashing.  I am from the forbidden side of the barn, full of sand and cockle burrs that hook to your unprotected soles.

I am from the tree red tulips that return every year, unnoticed, under the back patio.  The apple trees and pear trees whose long gone limbs I remember as if they were my own. 

I am from birthday parties with 7-up punch, M&Ms, and little tiny mints; strong women of faith who believe that everything, no matter how hard it may be, works together for God's greater good; from Ruth Chelesa and Byron Harold.

I'm from dinners around a kitchen table with the finish scratched off because of an older brother's marathon homework sessions, outside baseball games with Ghost Men instead of people, and a long line of men who mash up their fried eggs with a fork.

I am from the sound of my Virginia grandmother's voice, praying for God to bless our meal "to the nourishment of our bodies", yodeling, and singing "You Are My Sunshine." 

I am from an antique paper angel on the top of our Christmas tree.

I'm from a smalltown hospital with a doctor who delivered most of the children in my elementary school.  I am from the Black Forest in Germany.

I am from chocolate dream pie, heaped with Cool Whip; salmon patties with homemade macaroni and cheese, iced tea made on the stove; and summer delicacies of fruit pizza and dirt pudding made by an aunt around the swimming pool.

From a woman who swore she would never marry a farmer or a truck driver--but married both!  I am from a woman who found her true love the second time around.

I am from a necklace, with the stone from a long-forgotten engagement ring, from an even longer-forgotten relationship, between two people, one who is my hero and one I never met, that I wear to feel strong, safe, and loved.

So,...where are YOU from?

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