I'm sitting here feeling a bit homesick, which as I thought about it got a little muddier. Where exactly was I sick for?
Colorado? I was born and raised in the mountains, and there are moments when we go back that I feel so completely and utterly at ease that I'm tempted to pack us up and build a yurt in the middle of nowhere. The mountains, the sky, deer and cougars and bears and skunks...The near-perfect weather. I miss snow and 300+ days of sunshine. I miss skiing and hiking ten minutes from home. I miss "Colorado time" where "7:00" meant anywhere between 6:30 and 8:00. I miss seeing more pick-ups than minivans and knowing that every truck was a 4WD. I miss family.
Portland? I was meant to live in Portland. I want to put a bird on everything I own. In Portland I walked down the street like I owned the place. The best way I can describe it is that I knew how to be in Portland. I felt like we fit in, I knew where to find my village. I love the art, the weirdness, the family that we created and imported in Oregon. I miss the shared misery in March at yet another rainy day and the joy that fills the air when the sun breaks through. I miss the expectation that you recycle, reuse, and "reduce your footprint." I miss restaurants that advertise gluten-free, octo-vegan, pescatarian, locavore... I miss coffee shops and people watching and public transportation.
Minnesota? I miss our friends. I miss the down-home, basic values. I miss the expectation that of course you are a mom. I miss the malls (weird as that sounds). I miss cheese curds and state fairs and ren faires. I miss Minnesota Nice, Viking nation, and the feeling of accomplishment after you survive another sub-zero day.
We are home. We intend to be here awhile, and it's really starting to grow on me, but I'm having a hard time finding the little things I would miss. I've tried talking to people who've lived here awhile, but I'm not even sure I know what I'm looking for. There's a huge market that I like, and I love that we're so close to amazing forests and beautiful coast towns, but I haven't really found my niche here. I know it's somewhere, but for the life of me it continues to be elusive. I don't want to sound pouty, but rather I'm just noticing what an unusual feeling it is to not feel like I'm "clicking" here. It'll happen. I'm sure of it. I just can't picture where or what it'll be. And I can't really figure out what's missing. Our friends are awesome, the school is great, I love my job and C is working on getting into school. But I don't have a place where I have that settled feeling, a place I want to go to every weekend. A place that calls me when I start to feel disconnected. A place where I feel like I get it. Though I have this, and this works too. I guess these crazy people will have to do.