Following your dreams can be overwhelming and frightening but living the life you dream about makes it all worth it. Up until 6 years ago I was living in the suburbs feeling lost and disconnected, a fish out of water. I had a couple of friends in the neighborhood (who remain very special to me) but I didn't feel like I was where I belonged. It was a comfortable life to be sure, just not the one I was supposed to be living. At first I didn't really know what I wanted. I just knew I wanted something else. If I sound like I wasn't grateful for what I had, I truly was. It wasn't that it wasn't a good life, it was just not the right one for me. I felt a yearning and restlessness that was impossible to ignore, growing stronger as time passed. After a lot of soul searching we took a leap of faith and changed everything. I'd say most people in our lives thought we were crazy. Maybe we agreed with them a little. I would also say that most people in our lives, now couldn't imagine us anywhere else.
Life in the Village is so very good. We finally have roots, a place to call home. We are just as in love with it now as we were in the beginning, maybe more so. We can sit outside on our porches and hear the little league announcers calling the games in the park, the high school marching band practicing and occasionally music from celebrations on Main Street. Neighbors stop by for a glass of wine or invite themselves over for tea on the porch. Our friends think nothing of knocking on the door unannounced or popping in the back gate. That sort of thing used to unnerve me in my old life but is now just expected. We walk to dinner on Main Street, to the Farmers Market, to yoga, to the library, to shops and antique stores, to buy a bottle of wine at the winery or steaks to grill that night from the butcher. We borrow tools from our neighbors, help carry heavy things and get advice on renovation projects. As a Villager, I will happily bring you freshly baked cookies or bread, bring you a dinner when you are in need, watch your little ones in an emergency, invite your kids over to give you a break and in turn you help me with my garden, shovel my walk in the winter, share vegetables out of your garden, take care of my pets when I'm out of town or even offer to sleep on my sofa when my husband is out of town and something has happened to make me feel nervous about being home alone.
This is a community. This is our community, our people. This is home. This is the kind of place you don't ever want to leave. I have lived in more places than you can imagine and I have never experienced anything like it. I truly thought it didn't exist in real life. I have always been drawn to books about quirky people living in small towns. I often feel like I moved right into the setting of one of those novels. From the man who power walks while smoking his cigars and the one who takes his morning stroll with his mug of coffee to the chickens randomly walking down the street behind our house and the deer bounding down the street in front of the library. This magical wonderland is my home. I repeat that to myself in awe more often than you can imagine and the thought is always followed by the question in my mind...but what if we hadn't been brave and made that leap of faith? It honestly brings tears to my eyes to imagine living any other life than the one I am living right now. Sometimes a leap of faith is the only choice you have.