Six years ago this week we packed up our entire lives in Pennsylvania and prepared for the unknown. The truth – I was terrified. I can remember two weeks before we were set to move I sat at our kitchen island and cried my eyes out.
For 28 years my husband and I had only known one place – Pennsylvania. We were now getting set to move to a state 8 hours away from our families and everything that was familiar to us. If I had known then what I know now, I never would have cried or been terrified to pack up our lives and head south.
To say we made the right decision is putting it lightly. Our lives have completely changed because we made that move, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t heartbreaking to leave.
I started thinking about our journey over the last six years this week because one of my favorite shows, filmed here in North Carolina, officially ended. Chef and The Farmer on PBS saved me. I know it sounds corny but so many things are different here it can sometimes be downright comical. The very first time I noticed it was about two weeks after we moved, right before Thanksgiving. We made the decision to stay in our new home since we had just moved and the drive is not a fun one during the winter months, so I was preparing to have a Thanksgiving with just the two of us. This isn’t uncommon, we had done it before and we are currently planning to do it again this year, but that first year was probably the hardest and the one that opened my eyes to all the differences.
Did you know that stuffing is called dressing down here? I know now, but did not know then and after I left William Sonoma I sat in my car and cried again, how could I not know something so basic – I am the quintessential basic girl, but I didn’t. That was also the year I discovered Chef and The Farmer, specifically Vivian Howard, and it was a game changer for me in so many ways, and so when the final episode aired I caught myself crying again. Vivian Howard helped me to transition to the South. She helped me discover all the local goodness we have and she made me feel like I could navigate this crazy housewife life in the South.
I don’t think I will ever call myself Southern, but I know that we will always call the South our home.
We had only been married for two years when we moved and in those two years we had a lot of awful things happen to our families. Moving South was a way for us to actually dive in to being married and start our life together, instead of so much of our life being focused in the past and sadness. I am not saying that it was a bad thing if we would have stayed up North, but this move allowed us to have a fresh start at our marriage and made us realize that we were on our own and had to 100% rely on each other for support and guidance. You also can’t deny that the vitamin D you experience here is overwhelmingly good!
We bought our first home here. We started businesses here. We truly became adults here and we have no intentions of ever leaving this little corner of the South we call home.
I don’t often share with people the difficult times that I had with this move because it has all worked out so well for us, but such a big move at a not so perfect time did take its toll on me and I am always grateful for those who I found along the journey and the support that we have had with living so far away from our families. I promised myself when I got back into blogging that I wouldn’t sugar coat anything anymore. Those who only write the happy bubbly positive are not being true to themselves or their readers. We all go through difficult times and sometimes a random television show out of Deep Run, North Carolina is what helps to make the bad days fewer and to make you appreciate the life that your husband has provided for you.