Going back to where you were raised can bring many different feelings. By reconnecting with past experiences, oftentimes new lessons can be learned. Author of John Adams, David McCullough said, “History is who we are and why we are the way we are.” In this, by experiencing our past at a new point in our lives, we can learn new things about ourselves.
I recently visited my hometown to spend a weekend with my family. During the visit, I was able to reconnect with several family members and friends who I haven’t seen in years. Some time was spent touching base with people who care about me and helped mold the true Brent that is slowly revealing himself. Many of these people, I believe, had no clue of the turmoil going on inside of me as I grew up. While back in my hometown, a stop on the interstate that I couldn’t wait to flee after high school, I drove around to the places I used to hang out and thought about the events and moments that led me to my current place. I took time to enjoy one of my favorite restaurants, Skyline Chili, and reminisce about my youth with my father. I also met one of my nephews for the first time and marveled at how much my younger sister and brother have grown up.
Through all of this I am realizing that the things I’ve experienced while growing up in my small hometown in the Midwest have granted me knowledge and skills I would not have otherwise gained. Being friendly, courteous, and making friends with your neighbors are a way of life back home. I’m learning that this sense of community is very important to me. Also, I wandered around places where I camped out, fished, and rode my bike, recalling where I learned a respect and enjoyment of the natural beauty around me. For a place that I couldn’t wait to leave once I graduated high school, being there again, with a new perspective, revealed so many new things about me.
In closing, going back the where things started in my case of unknown identity, has led me closer to bringing out the Brent I am supposed to become. I now know that all that seems bad, can lead to good things in the long run. Touching base with where you came from does shine light on the path we travel in life.
Have you ever gone back and learned all new things from the visit down memory lane?