When I was born, my parents lived in an old house out in the middle of nowhere. This definitely couldn't be called a farmhouse, but at least 10 houses within a mile of us for sure could be. My mom had grown up in Dayton, OH and eventually moved to our area, and my dad is from Kentucky and later moved to the area in which we now live. We still live in that country house that they moved into so many years ago, but someday soon it'll be time for me to say goodbye.
Growing up, life was pretty great. I got to go to church camp, which was in the middle of a forest and definitely a home for me. When I had birthday parties, we gave the kids hayrides and went for goody bag scavenger hunts in our large backyard. There were horses right down the road, and I could hear donkeys in the morning. When I was really young, being surrounded by fields didn't bother me at all.
As I got older, though, I became frustrated at the rides I had to ask for to get to my friends' houses. I got bored of just bouncing back and forth from house to house to have fun with my friends. It was tiring to drive 45 minutes when I wanted to go shopping. Eventually, the cute woodland creatures on my porch became pests or animals I was terrified to hit anytime we were on the road. My backyard and creek became places for slimy creatures to hide. The fields became what was secluding me from the outside world.
But I can't say it was all bad. I love and always will love nature. There's this feeling I get when I'm in the woods on a warm summer day that's hard to explain, but it's like nothing else in the world. Living in the country also meant we could easily have animals and generally didn't need to worry too much about them other than giving them their necessities. It was also just cool to have somewhere to explore when I was younger. I think having lived in the country for my whole life gave me a different perspective than a large portion of the people I meet have.
Still, the city is where I thrive. And I don't mean a city like Tiffin, OH. I mean something with activities. A place where there are things to do and always new discoveries to make and people to meet. For now, those needs are being met in Oxford, OH, though it is smaller than Tiffin.
I've still never lived in a larger city, but I know that I love exploring them. I love people-watching and walking around downtown. I love being able to get places worth being within 15 minutes. I know there will be not-quite-so-amazing sides to living in cities, though. I'll need to be more careful. Traffic will be bonkers, and I'll need to pay a lot more than I currently do to get by. To get my dose of nature, I'll have to go camping or take a walk or hike in some park. Still, it's been my dream for years now. And as I grow older and get the chance to explore more cities, my dream feels more like my future each and every day.
Living in the country has been great, but it's not quite the life I hope to have. When I go back home, I feel lost and bored. The country will always be my home, but I have no doubt that the city will be my future.