So this last weekend I spent the night with T Lily out at her farm. We watched her brother play pro football Saturday night and then spent Sunday wandering aimlessly through fields throwing sticks for the dogs and lounging about in the sunshine.
T Lily grew up living the kind of life that I dreamed about. Horses, fields, dogs, four wheelers, big trucks, you name it I dreamed about it and she owned it. When I was in elementary school, and even on into middle school too, I would have given my left kidney to own a horse. (Not my right kidney, I like him too much. You know how it goes.) I roamed around our backyard pretending to feed my invisible horses (who all had names and different breeds and how many hands high they stood) and I zoomed down the street on my bicycle which I also pretended was a horse.
I would set up three "barrels" and race around them, changing my lead foot depending on what barrel I was coming around.
But Miss T Lily? She lived it. She raced in the rodeo, where I could only imagine myself in her shoes. I lived and breathed horses for a good chunk of my childhood, holding out hope that someday we would buy some acreage and my dreams would turn into reality.
Once we moved across town, I was 13 and just about to enter high school. I had lost that wide eyed wonder of hoping against hope that I could live on a ranch. I chalked it up to a little girl's horse phase and silently moved on to more "realistic" ideas. Dreaming about living on a farm? For babies! I declared, as I tried not to let on to the fact that I would never get what I wanted.
Honestly, I'd done a pretty good job of forgetting too. I was content with my life in town. With my backyard and dog. I didn't need anything else.
And then this weekend? You guys. I died. I died and I went to heaven and I never ever wanted to come home. It was all I could do to not turn into that little girl again. I had a hard time not getting giddy about everything. I think I asked T Lily a grand total of a bajillion times if I could just live there. Just stay on that farm with those beautiful animals and those wide open fields and those huge trucks forever.
Everyone always told me "You don't really want to live on a farm. It's a bunch of hard work." But they don't understand how I feel when I'm there. There was a sign one time I found on vacation that said "Home is where your heart says 'aaaaaah.'" And if that's the truth, then that farm in podunk Washington was my home. It was everything I had ever wanted and more.
Standing out in the middle of the lawn, throwing a stick for a dog to fetch, breathing in the scent of warm hay and horses, I was that little girl again. I was home.