A Magnificent Understanding of Love

I’ve Been Flocked

When I think of the feeling of love my mind has always gone to relationships, my children, family, friends, my eight cats. Until recently, when I moved to a small town farming community in Iowa.

I’ve lived in a city with a population of 4 million people for the majority of my life. When I first moved to Iowa it was a culture shock for me and I’d assume for the town residents who have experienced me.

I came from a place of living in a rat race. A place where you get the better job to make more money to have more materialistic things in efforts to create a sense of happiness that’s impossible to ever achieve, because you can’t achieve it when you live in a mindset that enough is never enough.

I am very much so a city girl and it shows in everything I do. I get road rage in the town square and I want to scream when I get stuck driving behind a tractor. I have a terrible attitude, I’m anti social and introverted. I dislike people, especially nice people who are kind and want to talk to me for no specific reason. I’m fast paced, intolerable and look nothing similar to the Iowa natives. I’m guarded and cold.

It’s clear, “I’m not from around here.”

It’s been a challenge for me to maintain those qualities in this small town. Their sense of community has slowly chipped away at my cold- hearted, rat race tendencies. I hear birds singing. I see flowers blooming. I watch bunnies frolic in my yard and when I look up my neighbors are waving.

I’ve learned love comes in many forms. Over the course of the nine months I’ve lived here I’ve become a part of something far more greater than myself.

It’s a magical feeling experienced in a magical place.

I was under the assumption I wouldn’t be accepted because I’m used to living in an environment of hostility and judgment, because I’m different and maybe there’s a part of me that didn’t want to be accepted and to continue to resort to my means of protecting myself from others.

The most valuable thing the town of Williamsburg has taught me is that when you allow yourself to be open the every day little things can fill your heart with joy. The residents are happy and have shown me a definition of humanity that makes me have faith in the world. That there’s hope for us.

Most importantly I’ve learned to love myself in a way I never had before. All my flaws, personality traits and tendencies I’ve disliked about myself aren’t nearly as bad as I thought they were. If anything they make me the person I am. I’m the city girl who can see the world through fresh eyes if I allow myself to do so.

I know I’m still rough around the edges. There are some things that take time to change. But when I woke up this morning and saw that my yard had been flocked while I was sleeping I realized I’ve fallen in love with this magical place.

The concept of flocking is a fundraiser for the high school Spanish Club and once you’ve been flocked you choose the next person to be flocked. It means someone thought of me. I feel as if I belong.

It’s the little things that make the big picture. It’s the little things that fill my heart and I’ve learned you can fall in love with a place the same as you can with a person.