Fly Over State of Mind

I used to always wish I lived in a warmer climate. I didn’t know until 2 years ago that I live in, what is often rudely referred to as a “fly over state.” Apparently the Midwest and Iowa in particular, just doesn’t cut the mustard. Do you know what though? I’m proud to call the Midwest region of the United States my home, I am even proud to be born and raised in the Midwest, also proud to be an Iowa resident. In LA and Florida, they may have golden sunshine and year round pools and amusement parks, which admittedly is pretty great too but they don’t have what we have.

Corn.

Ha, kidding, just seeing if you were paying attention.

I’m talking about 4 seasons y’all, all Vivaldi like.

You don’t  have to be from Iowa to know what I’m talking about. You just have to be from somewhere where it’s not unheard of to have blistering hot humid summer days that you think will never ever end. Then before you know it, you need a jacket and it’s time to go apple picking or to the pumpkin patch and don’t you dare pass up the complimentary hay rack ride.

Soon enough you’ll be walking through the freshly fallen snow, on the way to cut down your own Christmas tree on a family farm that gives you fresh hot cocoa and lets you play with adorable soft, very warm, compared to your near frostbitten digits, rabbits. They will be adorable. You will feed them carrots. You will have all the joys of rabbit ownership for 20-30 minutes, until the next family arrives and their kids make pitiful faces until you finally, full of guilt, hand over the rabbits you have so grown to love. Nevermind that you are in your late 20’s early 30’s now, it’s true it is “their turn.”

You won’t even get mad about handing them over but you will debate getting one of those adorable rabbits as a pet, until you google their needs and find out you are not near as ready for rabbit parenthood as you thought you were.

Somewhere past that point, winter will really arrive and vomit frigidly and violently, leaving glittery hills, 2+ feet long icicles hanging off of rooftops and slick scary black ice. Just when you think you can’t stand to layer up for the 73rd+ day, for just one day, it will turn 30 maybe even an entire 40 degrees outside, being from the Midwest you might even be inclined to wear shorts. People from Florida won’t even go swimming in 70 degree weather and if you know a Floridian transplant, they will mock you for so exuberantly welcoming 30 degree weather. Let them mock you, you know the value of the warmth after surviving all those negative temperatures.

Soon enough, something almost magical happens, just when you think winter will never end, it does, it just ends. Snow melts, robins return and flowers bloom. Ironically, those little white bell like flowers called ‘snowdrops’ signify the end of winter’s reign. Spring is again crowned the royalty of the land.

So now, what do you do? Begin the whole crazy cycle again. End. Begin. End. Begin. Death. Life. Death. Life.

I used to always wish I was from somewhere else, anywhere else, anywhere other than the Midwest, the ‘fly over states.’ Now, however, I see how every rain drop, every snowflake, every ray of sun, has equipped me to face the series of never-ending beginnings and endings in my life. I am so proud to call this my home. I am so humble to have had Mother Nature herself as my greatest teacher.

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