Last Friday marked the two year anniversary of the death of a classmate and friend, and for some reason I always have to listen to Nickleback’s Photograph and Frankie Ballard’s Helluva Life. One is our “class song” the other….you could say, really nails our lives back home. I also think that Dyllon would have liked it. Thinking about these things, it’s kind of hard to believe that 1) our 5 year class reunion is coming up next year. (Yeah it’s hard to believe that it’s been 5 years since this picture was taken). And 2) we’ve already lost one of our own.

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It kind of puts things in perspective when you think about it. How fast time goes by and then how fast it can be gone. It also amazes me what it takes for us to realize just exactly what we have in life. I was talking with one of my best friends over the past couple of days. She goes to school in Wichita and was home visiting her family for the weekend. (Of course, I told her that I was jealous). It struck me dumb-founded though when she told me that she was actually thinking of moving home when school was done. This was one of the kids who swore that they would never come back. Course, it took me coming to Denver to realize how much home really does mean to me. So both of us are in the same boat, we miss home.

So, it was actually my dear friend that got me started back up in what I needed to do. Listening to country music, writing on my novel again, thinking about home, and writing my own music. That’s what I needed–someone to talk to and to inspire me. The problem is, it’s fall–which means harvest season is starting up back home. This is my favorite time of year. Football games on Friday nights, the crisp air starting to settle in, the sound of the bins at night, the changing of the leaves, bonfires, s’mores, friends, family–I miss it all. It’s not here in the city, but I think being here really helped me to realize what I like about home, about being there and being a part of it.

It probably sounds strange with the career choice that I’ve made, but then again who knows what’s going to happen. God has everything planned out for me, but He also knows the desires of my heart. Traveling the world as a performing artist would be AMAZING, and yes, I would miss home terribly. But…if doing that and then settling down with my future husband and raising a family in Doniphan County….my life would be complete. I want to raise my children the way Dad and Mom raised Dave and me. Sounds strange, but I wouldn’t mind marrying a good ol’ boy (actually I would prefer it…which would explain why I’m still single 😛 )

I know of a lot of famous singers who did this. They didn’t have to live in Nashville or Los Angeles in order to fullfill their dreams. (Course they were famous too) But that gives me something to strive for. I mean, this place is who I am. Alabama said it best, “I was born country, and that’s what I’ll always be. Like the rivers and the woodlands wild and free. I’ve got a hundred years of down-home running through my blood. I was born country, and this countries what I love.” I want my kids to experience this life, and not just when we visit “Grandpa and Grandma Scholz” (ok…..that was seriously really weird to type out……) but seriously, I think being raised in that lifestyle creates you into a person that is special. We might be “slow” to the city people, but I love it. It’s made me more open to the outside world around me, because I have a strong base. It’s a place where faith, family, and community still live strong. It’s a place where honesty still thrives. It’s the Heartland, the heartbeat of America–it’s home.

So I will write and sing about it, even if it hurts my soul because I can’t be there. But I think letting myself fall into those feelings will help in the sadness. Remembering, thinking, bringing to life all those aspects that I love so much….it will bring home to me, even under these city lights. So tonight, I think of my classmates, my school, my friends, my family, my small towns, and most importantly….my country home.

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