Dirt roads. Mom and pop grocery stores. Grand old buildings from yesteryear.

Just some of the elements we all know from a small, southern town.

Many people would hear that and get all nostalgic of their childhood, or maybe they'll think of "The Notebook" or some other movie that romanticized small southern living.

Few would think of the lack of funding for all parts of a county, lack of industrialization, and beautiful buildings that currently do nothing more than hollow shells representing decline and unlived potential.

So yes, it's okay to think about the facts. It's okay to wish you grew up around culture, diversity, inclusion, and prosperity. It's okay to get tired of the same three "parks." It's fine to hate having to go to Wal-Mart for anything significant. It's okay to get tired of needing gas money and having to drive 30 minutes one way to the next town over to do simple things like see a movie, go to a museum, or have more than three and a half options of food to eat.

Not adoring your hometown has nothing to do with the people there personally, the things you learned there, and it absolutely has nothing to do with the remembrance of where you've come from.

Some people are who they are in spite of the geographical location they're from, not because of.

How you feel about anything, especially something that is yours, can and should be shared.

Wanting to get out of your hometown ultimately means you simply want better for yourself. For crying out loud, people have left their home countries because another area granted them better opportunities.

Not everyone finds tiny-town living to be the highlight of their life.

Lastly, where you got your origins geographically means absolutely nothing in retrospect to where you as an individual started your journey.

In the journey of life, "where you come from" does not reference a city, state, street, nor physical address. It's your past versions of yourself.

For example, let's say you reached a weight of 200 lbs and became unhappy. You start fresh at the local gym and work out daily for a year. At the start of the next year, you're 135 lbs and look and feel your best. Someone walks in the gym, and they're clueless on how to use the machines, they do reps wrong, and you notice they aren't consistent. Instead of helping them, you laugh. Do you know what happened? You forgot where you came from. Not the street. Not the small town that you grew up in. But literally, you forgot the actual state of being you came from.

Furthermore, let's create a new analogy.

Sandra and Jenny are both from New Orleans. Sandra lives in the 9th Ward whilst Jenny lives in the Garden District. They both go to college in a different state. When asked about the city, Sandra may reference the same city differently than Jenny. Jenny may have fond wishes to return home, whilst Sandra only desires to visit the people she loves that are still there.

In total, it's all about perspective. America is known for immigration. Even internally, people migrate for new jobs, school, and opportunities. It's possible to move to a city and love the college and dislike the town, or even move to a new job and end up disliking the job and loving the city!

Where your parents found their "forever home" is nothing more than your start. It does not have to be your "forever home", or even a place you adore!

Thus, it's not the state you come, it's the state of being you come from. A geographical location says absolutely nothing about your character! The most important place you could ever be from is your own individual headspace. And never forget where you have come from.