Living in the North

by Josée

A couple days ago something strange happened to me. I was making my way around town and a thought came to me. I like it here. At first, I was disturbed by that thought. For the last couple years, I’ve wanted to leave this place. To go somewhere with shorter winters and longer summers. To a place where gardening wasn’t about of outwitting the cool weather to make your “big” tomatoes grow larger than the size of a grape.

The truth is I grew up in Northern Canada, and have fond memories of living here as a child. As a child I explored the forests and streams, enjoyed the chilly lakes and climbed the rocks and trees that were everywhere. But after highschool, something changed, I felt ready to leave. So, I went South and love the excitement of the big city and the warmer weather.

While at school I married and both Hubby and I realized that we wanted to return to out home town (Hubby grew up in the same place as I) after finishing our degrees so that we could be closer to family and more affordable housing. Coming home was exciting at first. But, then it took us a long time to form a community of friends. And there was the long winters, and the cool summers, something that never seemed to bother as a child. Having little ones seemed to amplify my loneliness and cabin fever because I couldn’t up and go as easily as I did before.

So why the sudden shift? I still don’t quite know. Maybe it has something to do with my little ones getting older, or the building of new and beautiful friendships. Perhaps I see more clearly the blessing of being close to family. And maybe the winter doesn’t seem as bleak when you have skis attached to your feet or you can walk to the park down the street and go skating or sledding. Maybe once again I’m beginning to realize how amazing it is to be surrounded by vast forests and chilly clear lakes. Maybe, it’s all that vitamin D I’ve been taking. Who knows.

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