I've been in Georgia for a while now, and just like being anywhere would it's helping me grow into the person I will be. Too many people let their growth stagnate once they've reached adulthood or achieved certain milestones and that's something I promised myself I never would. As human beings we should never stop growing or changing. We have to adapt and develop while keeping the things we're pleased with even if we feel "complete" and quite frankly, I've never met a person who has been completely happy with themselves that's ended their development.
This one really isn't about me. It's about Chris. He's done some changing and some difficult staying the same. We came to Georgia to spend time with his family and be a part of it. We wanted to help his grandfather and do what we could to be a part of the life his family has here just like we did with my family. We both knew that this change would be difficult for me since I've had an irrational fear of anything below the Mason-Dixon line and have spent my whole life in the Philadelphia area with the exception of college, which I also spent in Pennsylvania.
Chris, however, was ready for a change. Changing to be with his family made perfect sense. He has always had a deep seated care for his family, even from far away. This is a place that he's always felt like was his home. The place where he was born and the place he knew he could always come home to. So we came home for him.
No matter what plans people make or how many different endings they can see things have a way of changing. Situations are rarely what we believe them to be when we see them. It is only when you're in these situations that you can see everything, experience everything, and make decisions about everything. It reminds me of a place I used to go often, a house on a hill across from a farm. This farm had fields and fields of whatever it was that they grew and a house that sat on top of the hill. I'd taken a photo of it to look at when I was away. The photograph couldn't capture the intricacy of the place's reality. Now I know this is true of almost everything.
Without getting into too much detail, things here weren't exactly as they were portrayed to us before we came, or even when we first arrived. It has taken being here for some time to get a fuller picture. This new information comes with it's challenges. Reason dictates that we change our plans, goals, and objectives based on the new information we gain. There is only one problem with that reason. What if our original goals and objectives were to care for people that we care about? To become a part of what is, not change it to what we believe it could be? What if our main priority is simply to care about and learn about what has been in with a place or person so that we can take the things we have grown to love into ourselves so that we can carry them on to the rest of out lives? And what if the things we believed in were somehow threatened or endangered? What do we do then?
Christopher has done an amazing job here. First with helping out in little ways that were appreciated, from cutting the grass to making sure the correct lights are on at night. He's grown in his own ways and that growth has helped him become a true man in the eyes of the man that he wanted to grow up to be. In becoming that man he's been able to become his friend as well. While this may seem small to so many it is so big. When you can become adult enough to transcend the relationship you've always known and valued and also become a friend to one of the most important people in your life you've reached a point that so many never do. I'd like to think that my mother and I developed into friends years ago, and knowing that I have her respect on that level with her being my model for adulthood means more than people can understand.
Back from that tangent things here have changed a bit. It would be easy to abandon the goals and objectives that were originally held. This would be easier if it felt like no one around you held those same objectives, or had a pattern of behavior that seems easier than doing things the way we believe to be right. Even with this knowledge and the blatant behaviors of others my darling has remained strong in his conviction. He could have easily let go of his principles and gone with the flow of others. He could get up and leave whenever he pleased so that he doesn't have to witness events or behaviors that cause him discomfort, displeasure, or discontent. He could ignore the events around him and try to go on about his daily life, trying to keep it away while he worked towards the life goals that he's set out to achieve. All of this would be easier than continuing on, caring for people that we care about, becoming a part of what is, not change it to what we believe it could be, simply caring about and learning about what has been with a place or person so that we can take the things we have grown to love into ourselves so that we can carry them on to the rest of out lives.
Chris carries on with these goals, with one addition: preservation. He continues to work towards the goals we've had and preserve the lifestyle and wellbeing of the people who have helped him become the man that he is, and will continue to be. The simple fact that he has been able to hold fast to the things that he cares for, and dedicate himself so fully, is absolutely heartwarming. It helps me to remember that I've chosen the man I will marry carefully, and for this I am grateful.