Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Why Michigan Is Home

A month ago, I posted my hundredth post and promised if you asked me a question, I would answer truthfully. I have two questions remaining. The first is listing 100 favorite appetizers and desserts, which I think would be too difficult to do, so my truthful answer is sorry, you'll have to google appetizers or dessert for recipes.

The other remaining question is: WHY did you stay in Michigan? Why didn't you get the hell out like the rest of us? Did you always plan to stay there?

The truth is that I had no intention of staying in Michigan, especially the Detroit area. And I left.

First, I left metro Detroit. I attended undergrad as far away from home as I could and still be in Michigan. A full nine hours away from home and I might as well have been in an entirely different world because of the difference from the metro area. I loved it.

As the end of  college neared, I debated about going to law school (or grad school for mathematics) in a big city or the mountains. I never once considered returning to the Detroit area. I loved my family and missed them, but wanted more. I didn't know what I wanted more of--city or trees--but I wanted more.

I ended up going to law school in western New York. I became an entirely different person. I figured out who I was. I grew up.  And I knew I would not return to Michigan. My life waited for me in New York or DC.

Getting my hood!
Then, I graduated. And I studied for the New York bar exam. I studied a lot for the New York bar exam. I lived that summer only to study for the New York bar exam. And I took (and passed) the New York bar exam. I celebrated by taking a trip in Michigan. I spent a couple of days camping with my mom in mid-Michigan, then up to Mackinac with her, then went up to the U.P. for several more days with friends. It was a great trip and it reconnected me with home.

When I returned to New York and re-started my job search, all I could think about was home . . . Michigan. I couldn't keep my family out of my mind. I couldn't shake the idea that if I went to the big city, I wouldn't be back in Michigan. I wouldn't have easy access to lakes, wilderness, seasons, and the wonders of a city. Where else do you have it all? And not returning made me sad. No place could have as much to offer as Michigan, so I sent out a bunch of resumes to Michigan firms in a moment of nostalgia.

Two days later, I was jumping in the car to drive to Michigan for the Labor Day weekend with a lot to think about. I had been offered a job at a small firm in the city where I went to law school and offered another job in DC, working as a lawyer and web editor. I was heading home to think about it and see family before I moved farther away. As I was finishing packing my car, I got a call for an interview in Michigan the next day. I threw a suit in the car and went home. I was offered a job during the interview and accepted later that day. I started the Tuesday after Labor Day. The rest is history. I was home.

1 comment:

  1. I think once you are a mid-westerner...you are always a mid-westerner (coming from an Ohioan that can't imagine living anywhere else!)

    I know how you feel though...I traveled A LOT for work. I loved it and found myself always excited to go home. I lived in some of the greatest cities in the US and the World and still knew I would always come home. My family is here and that always meant so much to me. Where else can you go that has everything so close (although we are living in the middle of nowhere and an hour away from an airport now).


Having a child with a CHD is like being given an extra sense---the true ability to appreciate life. Each breath, each hug, each meal is a blessing when you've watched your child live off a ventilator, trapped in an ICU bed, being fed through a tube. Each minute is a miracle when you've watched your child almost die and come back to you.
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