Home Is Where…

They say home is where the heart is. But if you’re like me, your heart is all over the place. 

These are the mountains I saw every single day growing up. They’re where I hiked and camped with my family, where I snuck up to escape the warm summer days by dipping my toes in a cool stream, where I met my future husband 20 years ago. I even climbed to the very tip-top of the tallest one (pictured: Longs Peak, Colorado; elevation 14,259 feet). On that day in August 2012, I was sure I could do anything.

But then life beckoned. Opportunities opened and I moved across the country, away from all my family, away from what had always been my home. I moved away from everything I’d ever known and the environment I’d grown so accustomed to. 

It rocked my world. It threw me into crisis. 

Who was I? Where did I belong? What was I meant to do? 

The woman I am today bears little resemblance to the girl I left behind in those foothills. She’s seven years older and somewhat wiser and way more worn down…yet more sure than ever that God brought her to exactly where she’s meant to be. 

Being away from family breaks my heart. I never knew how HARD it would be, or that it would actually sever relationships I’d once treasured. 

But my new life is here. It’s where my husband and I have built our own home. It’s where I’ve birthed my three sons. It’s where I’m so-imperfectly juggling everything I once dreamed of: marriage, motherhood, career. It’s where I imagine I’ll be for as far into the future as I can see. 

When I close my eyes, I can still smell the fresh mountain air and feel the sweet breeze blowing and hear the meadowlarks serenading me with their God-loves-you-always melody. I see the stars glowing against the dark black sky as my mom and I lay in the back of her pickup scanning the heavens for a glimpse of some comet we heard would be passing by. I stomp atop the snow with my dad on a winter-wonderland walk in search of wild deer. I smile “YES!” to the man of my dreams as he’s in front of me on blended knee by the same glimmering lake where we’d once met. 

My home is in me.

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