my return to small town life.


Eight months ago, we moved into our new home -- thirty minutes from the conveniences of a city. {cv} and I made the conscious choice to remove ourselves from the hustle and bustle. Though we grew up in small towns roughly a thousand miles apart, our early years were spent in the confines of a town which has less inhabitants than some New York City apartment complexes. I miss some of the conveniences of the city (like good sushi and my favorite dry cleaner), but I relish the quiet of our small town life. 

To frame up this discussion, it is important to give a little background. All my life, I have been an extreme extrovert. I introduce myself to strangers in elevators. I chose to go to a school where I didn't know a single soul. However, in the last year, I noticed that I don't need that social interaction in the way I did ten years ago. To be honest, I am having a hard time deciphering whether our move, motherhood, or age has made me more of an introvert. 

Stranger still, I don't hate this conversion of sorts. My husband is an introvert, through and through. It is highly possible he is rubbing off on me. While I still love my short stints in cities -- be it for travel or work, there is something deeply peaceful about pulling into our driveway and leaving the craziness behind. Living in this deeply "social" world, however, you are never really that far from the constant firestorm of reminders that my world is much different than many of the people I follow on Instagram or elsewhere. 

The hardest part of this shift just might be the fact that, as petty as it sounds, my life seems less "Instagram-worthy" than those who live in more happening places. I fear that my followers will find my quiet life boring and feel compelled to press that unfollow button. As an extrovert, this is based in my desire to be accepted -- something which I have struggled with my whole life. (Everyone wants to be part of the cool crowd, right?) I realized recently that the sooner I accept that not everyone will like that small town life, the better off I will be. I love the life I've been given. My new introverted side reminds me that my family and my friends matter most. More importantly, I know I cannot determine my self-worth based on the approval of random strangers on the internet. 

In the midst of this self-reflection, I wondered (honestly) why anyone reads here. In the beginning, I shared a great deal about surviving our long-distance relationship. I posted collages about outfits I wanted to wear. I had a never-ending fount of creative energy. In the last few months, I have recoiled a bit to determine what it is I want to do with my blog and how I can bring some sort of good from it. I have always said that I won't waste your time with worthless posts, so my goal is to continue blogging with intention. Small town life may make my Instagrams a little less exciting, but I still have things to share -- which I hope will help you, inspire you, and encourage you in your own life. Bear with me as I get that footing, but I promise: I'm not going anywhere.

Somewhere, deep inside, I always knew I was best suited for small town life. I grew up in the small town John Mellencamp so famously sang about in 1985. When I left that small town in 2003, I would have never guessed you would find me back in the boondocks. I loved my formative years in southern Indiana, but I was ready to escape -- as most 18-year-olds are. Finding myself back in a small town 12 years later, I am more than content to share this 'slower' world with our son. We still have plenty to discover in our new small town, but we will get there. For now, I will remind myself that good things take time. I will always have a place in my heart for the years I spent in DC and Providence, but this coastal small town life is fine by me. As I learn to navigate life with this new (yet somehow familiar) perspective, I am so grateful to have you along for the ride. xoxo {av}

73 comments:

  1. Lovely post! As you "grow up" and evolve, so does your blog -- it's only natural. Frankly, I find it refreshing. Bloggers that write from the heart and share more personal stories will reflect that evolution, and they are the ones I continue to read and follow ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What Amanda said :) Beyond that, though, I don't think you need to worry about labels - small town girl, city girl; extrovert, introvert. There's a season for everything, but that doesn't mean you're not the same you you've always been. I'm sure you are, just in a new season!

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  2. I have so many of the same feelings as you. I love you so much! that is all. ox

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  3. I felt like this too. I stopped blogging for a long time because nothing was happening and I was worried that I would be deemed "boring". I currently live in a city where I don't know many people and have definitely turned into an introvert. You just have to sit down and see what you have and work with what you've got :)

    That's what I'm doing and I'm starting to feel a lot more brighter! x

    ReplyDelete
  4. I hear ya! My husband grew up where we are currently living. And, although it has grown a lot since I have been here, it is still pretty small town to me. (How does EVERYONE know everyone?) And now that we have a baby it seems like it is the same thing day in and day out - keeping it interesting on my blog on instagram is tough. But I think you do a great job of it!!

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  5. Geez you had me nervous that you were going to stop blogging... :)

    There are very few "real" blogs such as yours out there anymore... it's all the same cliche stuff. Keep doing what you're doing! xx

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  6. I grew up as a huge extrovert, one who could talk to anyone and I made friends easily with small talk. I married an introvert too and slowly am realizing I too have become more introverted. I don't need to have plans and be out and about. I don't need small talk and actually dread having to be at places knowing small talk will be needed. I would love to raise my family in a small town :)!

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  7. yay for small town! i always thought i wanted to be far away, and big city living, but it's just not it anymore. and don't worry about instagram!!! i'd much rather follow a true life, small town feed than same-old, same-old over stylized city snaps.

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