As I sit here looking out at the mountains on our last morning at the Grove Park Inn, I am thinking about what my ‘take home’ is for this North Carolina adventure. We always enjoy our travels, but something was extra special about this particular trip. Maybe it’s that we both needed this time away together after the stress of home renovation and work responsibilities. Maybe it’s that as the years pass, we are extra grateful to celebrate our anniversary in places that mean so much to us. No matter the reason, I am taking away wonderful memories and a deepened awareness of how blessed I am in having Dan as my partner in life. His attention to detail, to nuance, to fun, and to romance, has made not only this trip, but my life, so rich.
I am reminded to be grateful for everything, both good and not so good. We’ve talked about the challenges we’ve faced over our thirteen years together, and how each time they have led us to something better- even the darkest moments. I realize that it’s easy to see that from the perspective of time, but with age I hope that I will remember that lesson in the heat of battle. Another thing I am taking home- home. Home is where Dan is, where our animals are. I am grateful to see and experience these beautiful places, and I will leave a part of my heart here. Now it’s time to head home to where the rest of my heart lies- our little piece of paradise in Birmingham. I can’t wait to see the wagging tails of our sweet welcome wagon. There truly is no place like home.