There’s a quote from The Curious Case of Benjamin Button that says “It’s a funny thing coming home. Nothing changes. Everything looks the same, feels the same, even smells the same. You realize what’s changed, is you.” And I find some truth in that quote.
I’ve been back in LaPorte for a little over a week now, and as I drive through the city, only a few things look different. Round the Clock has a new sign out front, an old church was knocked down and the Taco Bell is all fancy now. (Can someone please explain to me why fast food restaurants feel the need to make themselves fancy? You aren’t fooling anyone.) My sister is working on getting her driver’s license, my dog looks a little bigger and my dad is almost done with redesigning my parent’s bathroom.
And now, pick-up trucks and full camouflage gear have replaced the Maserati’s and business suits I was so keen on seeing in London, I was stuck behind some lady trying to deposit a bag full of coins at the bank today and a flurry of gunshots wakes me up every morning because that’s normal. I’m greeted in the same way every time I visit my mom in her kindergaten class when I visit my old elementary school, and we sing the same songs.
This time though, every time I run into someone I know, they ask me questions about London. The most reoccurring question tends to be “so you must hate it here now?” No, I don’t hate it per se, I just don’t love it. Aside from my family and friends, there is nothing else for me in this place.
So I guess it is me that has changed the most. I don’t notice the little changes anymore because I’m too preoccupied in a different life. I dream of moving away and becoming a successful journalist. I dream of traveling the world and meeting my idols. I’ve grown in the past few years from a small town girl afraid of the world to a bit city enthusiast ready to tackle the world. The small town I grew up in feels too enclosed. It’s suffocating and toxic.
Life is back to as normal as it’s going to be, but it’s not the same, and it never will be.