This weekend left Will looking at each other and simply saying, “Wow, this was a great weekend.” There was nothing overly enexpected or exciting about our trip, but it was just a great weekend.
It started out special. After class I met will for a quick bite at Wendy’s. He told me he bought something for me and wanted me to hear it after lunch. So, we went out to his car and he told me he bought this cd because it had this song on it that reminded him of us. It was Keith Urban’s “Making Memories of Us.” I listened to it and started crying. It was so sweet that he surprised me with that. What a way to start a great weekend. After that I had to rush off because I had a hair appointment. My hair lady is so great. She was so excited about will and I’s adventure. Her parents are missionaires in Africa, so she was really glad for us and the opportunity to get out of Oklahoma for a while and travel and just do this awesome thing together.
After my hair appointment I went by my mom’s office to order the dress I had wanted from Ann Taylor. Yay! Then I cam home, will and I packed and we were off.
Our first stop was Quail Springs mall. I had a gift certificate from my favorite store, the Limited, to use before we move, so that was a blast! I got 2 cute pairs of capris, 3 cute little shell tops in different colors, another shirt and some earrings. IT was fun, and by then my gift card was blown. Anyway, so then we went to our hotel.
I had never stayed at the Waterford, so it was so fun. It was really pretty. We checked in and then went downstairs to Bellinis. We were starved! We are used to eating around 5:30 and by then it was well after 7, so we were so hungry we didn’t even really enjoy the atmosphere. We were concentrated on our food. It was really good, I will miss that place when we go- even though I’ve only been twice.
The next day was great. We went downstairs for breakfast- which was really yummy. After that, we checked out and headed to Norman. On the way, Will was listening to the radio and heard that the 3 living OU Heisman trophy winners from OU were signing autographs at Coach’s restaurant… so of course we had to go!
Will was like a little kid- it was adorable. He was all smiles. his dimples were in rare form. There was this limited edition lithograph picture thing that you could get signed, and of course it was the most expensive. Will really wanted it, so we decided to get it. I mean, he is going to be away from OU football for a while, how could I say no? We went it and got it autographed. Will shook Jason White’s hand and was like, “I really have enjoyed watching you play.” After we got done, he was so cute. He was like, “I shook Jason White’s hand!” HE got a little star struck to say the least. I was really happy for him, because it was a big thing for him to give up OU for a while. (I know to most that sounds silly, but when you live in Oklahoma… that is what you do). So anyway, we went to the game and met up with one of Will’s friends from high school that had drove down from Kansas. IT was good to see him and his wife. It was just good catching up on everything. His wife started selling Mary Kay too, so we had a lot to talk about… she is doing really well. I on the other hand, am not at the moment! Too much going on. The game was fun. There is just something being in that stadium and watching those guys play that gets you fired up. Like I said, OU is like our NFL team. It was great. I will really miss going ot all the games. I know Will will too. We had a lot of fun on those days!
After the game, we had to make a stop at Ted’s. I mean afterall, we won’t be able to go there for a while so we have to eat there every chance we can get! To say the least, I blew my diet as you can tell!
After that we headed home and stopped my will’s parent’s to show off his new treasure. They were impressed, but Will’s brother wasn’t (he is a vet student at OSU… talk about bedlam).
Sunday was pretty normal, except now our news is out in the open. IT was a mixed response… I won’t go into detail- it would take forever. I got a lot of questions about going over there with my blonde hair. They asked me if I was going to color it… I’m thinking no.
Anyway, there is so much more I want to write about all of that and the rest of the weekend, but I better move on and get started on what I really need to be doing on the computer.
I’m sitting in my parent’s house for probably the last time. Boy is that strange! I went to the cabinent to get something out, and then I realized that nothing would be there. There has always been a mirror in the hallway that I would glance at each time I walked by, but it’s gone. IT’s just such a different feeling. You don’t realize how big a house is until everything is out of it. I am excited about thie new huge change, but I am a “golden retreiver.” I am just kind of loyal to what I am used to and don’t do major change all that well. That is not bad, it just makes me different from some- like Will who will be sad but is ready to leave.
I want to say THANK YOU SO MUCH to those who have posted encouraging feedback the past few days. So many people where I am from just don’t get why we are doing this, so it has been nice to hear from people outside of my everyday life who can see things from another perspective. Talk about refreshing!
I want to leave you with just a last thought about my house. It is bittersweet. It is a speech I gave my 2nd year of college. I was going to doctor it up a bit because I think I’m a better writer now than I was back then, but I decided to leave it. As you will find out, the ending today is different then the ending when I wrote it- a little sader today! But nonetheless, it says kind of what I’m feeling now! I hope you all enjoy!
Thanks for listening! Have a great afternoon.
I’ve moved around a lot in my life. A whole lot I should say. My dad was in the military for 20 years, so my entire life that was the only lifestyle I knew. In fact, I just thought everyone moved as much as my family did. I didn’t know any different. To stay stationary didn’t seem normal. Now, when I say I moved around a lot as a kid I wasn’t lying. By the time I reached the 5th grade I had been in 9 different schools. That almost averages out at 2 a year. Moving was a normal thing, so each school change eventually became more of a minor transition to adjust to rather than the “end all be all” of my career as an elementary schooler. I had come to understand that the friends I made at school would only be temporary playmates, and that pen pals didn’t last forever. By then I had learned the basics, so adjusting to a new school had become a routine of simple rules to remember. I knew to never sit by the kid who ate paste, being picked as the helper for the week gave you instant popularity, and I learned that having the brand new box of 64 crayons with the sharpener on the back was the only box to have.
However, by 4th grade I began to realize that “normal” people’s families did not move around all the time. In fact- all of the friends I had come to know had lived in the same place all of their lives. It was then I realized that maybe moving so much was not normal. In the middle of my 4th grade year I got the news that I had come accustomed to hearing every couple of years or so- we were moving. However, this time the news hurt. I was tired of getting dragged around to new towns and schools. I wanted to stay in one place like everyone else. I was tired of getting comfortable only to leave what began to become familiar.
We were moving to Oklahoma this time. It had seemed as if the joke I had always heard about this town had come true- it’s a black hole and no matter how many times you leave- you always come back. I had been there 3 times before, but this time we would be staying for 3 years. We moved in the middle of summer, which gave us time to move in and get ready for the school year. Now, because my family moved around so much we always lived in the military post’s temporary houses. However, for some reason, this time my parents decided to go house hunting. I was very unfamiliar with this house-hunting concept. We arrived in town and began looking at houses. We had been looking for 10 days in the middle of the sweltering Oklahoma summer. That year records had been broken for high temperatures. Getting in and out of the car and into the hellish heat became tedious. The 10th day, my mom had had it. We came to a house that had just been built. We toured it and liked it. I will never forget what my mom said to my dad after looking at the house driving to our hotel. She said, “It’s a nice house in a nice neighborhood. It’s too hot and I’m tired of looking. Besides, we’ll only be here 3 years. Let’s get it.” So we did. The next day we went to the realtor and bought the house. Our first house as a family- finally no temporary army house. We actually had a house. Now, you may be thinking, “It’s just a house- why in the world did you get so excited?” To me, buying that house meant that things wouldn’t be so temporary. We would actually be here for a while. My family had never gotten too comfortable in one place, and now, it seemed as if we had. We actually had our own place. A place where there were no rules- we could paint the walls if we wanted to, and we could park our cars anyway we chose to. We had finally settled in to a place that I knew I would want to get used to.
That fall I started my 5th grade year at one of the local elementary schools. I met wonderful friends that were not so temporary and made good memories. I finished up my grade school days at there and prepared to get ready for junior high. Now, it had been planned that after my 7th grade year we would probably move. I blocked it from my mind. I did not want to leave the life I had begun to build. My 7th grade year came and went without mention of moving. Each time my father had the opportunity to pick the top three places he would want to get transferred to, this town would be at the top of the list. We became active members of our church and made several close friends through the activities there. My little sister finished her first year at the same elementary school I had as I finished my first year of junior high. A lot of transitions began occurring in my life. I had a close circle of friends, I became a teenager, and I got heavily involved in school activities.
The years came and went. Many changes occurred in those years- some good and some bad. However there was a constant that remained- through everything, life still went on, and it went on in our house- here in my little town. At that point I had grown to be a junior in high school. Our family joke had become the fact that we somehow remained here after all of these years. We should have moved 2 years earlier, yet we remained. It’s almost as if my mom’s statement of only staying temporarily became an ironic falsity. By this time we came to love this place, the place we previously deemed the black hole. Moving was no longer a fear of mine. I knew for as long as I lived in here that red brick house on the west side of town would be mine. However, that year a turning point occurred in my family. My dad had reached his 20 years in the military. He was faced with a choice. He was up for promotion. If he took it we would have to move to Kansas for 6 months. After those 6 months there would be a few more moves over a short time span. His other option would be to retire and look for a new job. After many conversations, and after much prayer, my father retired from the military the summer after my junior year and began a job hunt. My dad didn’t find much here, but an opportunity came for him to get a job in Dallas. Regardless of where my dad got a job, we all agreed the rest of the family would remain here so that I could finish my last year of high school here. After all, I had finally remained in a school system for over 6 years, and had friends I had known since grade school. I had found my niche and wasn’t about to leave it behind my last year. I wanted to walk across the stage with the people I had literally grown up with.
My dad began his job in Dallas, working there all week and returing home on the weekends. My family decided that after I graduated they would move to Dallas. My senior year my parents spent a lot of weekends house hunting for the right place. This made me somewhat sad. I knew I’d be in college, so where my parents lived shouldn’t really matter, but for some reason it did. This town was an anchor point for me. If my parents were not there, I wouldn’t have any reason to stay. I wanted them to stay in here, in the house we had built together. Where we celebrated Christmases, and had family come visit us. Where I had dozens of sleepovers and movie nights. Where I arrived home to after going on my first date, getting my license, and eventually my diploma. The thought of that brick house on the west side of town not being ours was something I couldn’t think of. Moving took on a different meaning to me as I reached my senior year. It was something I had forgotten how to do. It was something I didn’t want to do. I simply couldn’t imagine driving by that house seeing different cars in the driveway, different flowers in the beds, and different people in the windows, where new colors decked the wall and different aromas filled the house. That house was not just a place I lived in like all of the others, it had become our home, a place where I knew we’d be forever. A place where my best friend, my sister, lived just up the hall. That house was where I grew up. It was my family’s home and the symbol of the place we knew we could always return to and would always be accepted at.
My senior year came and went, and as it came closer to the time to move, my family couldn’t seem to leave. P, my sister, loved her school. We loved our church. We loved our life here. Oklahoma had become our home, and leaving it didn’t seem natural. So, my family decided to stay here, and I decided to attend college and remain close to home. Things are still as normal, and I still live in that red brick house on the west side of town.
Now, if you were to drive by my house you would simply see a house. And I guess that’s pretty much all it is. However, when I drive by my house I see the love and joy of many wonderful years my family has built on. I see a place that after many years of moving, I knew that we would always be here. That brings me to the moral of my story. Home is where the heart is. Home is the place you cannot imagine leaving. Regardless of where we may have moved, we would have been “okay, ” but over the many years we spent in here, it became close to our heart. So, remember that home is where your heart is. I hope you have found a place for your heart as my family has found for ours.