New Home: Being Welcomed By The Natural World

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A few days ago I moved into my new home and was welcomed not only with balloons and adorable hand-drawn banners, but with fireflies, a thunderstorm, and a supermoon...

I've lived in San Francisco for the past 8 years, and though it has countless wonders, it does not have my beloved thunderstorms. They're common but always-exciting here in Illinois, and I took the magnificent all-night storm that began shortly after my arrival as a personal welcome from the Midwestern Weather Gods. In the brief window before the thunder and lightning and rain hit, there were lightning bugs glowing and glittering all over the garden. My life in San Francisco included neither lightning bugs nor a garden! As for the supermoon, it was a phenomenon not limited to rural Illinois, of course, but I like to think that our especially dark (and fog-free!) sky gave me a view of it that I simply wouldn't have had in the city. It made for a very memorable first night in my new home, and I'll definitely think of that night whenever future supermoons roll around.

Is it fraught to take natural phenomena so personally? Most likely. Will I ever stop doing it? Probably not. There have probably been thunderstorms and fireflies all week, and they certainly had nothing to do with my arrival, but they're what I choose to remember and focus on — the feeling that I was being welcomed. I could focus on the neighbor's dog that would not stop barking, or the super-annoying lady on the airport shuttle with me who gave me a headache, or the mysteriously broken tree in the backyard, or the fact that my storm kept me up all night and I was fairly useless the next day. I could have thought of those as my less-than-ideal welcomes — but why? I'd rather take all the magical things personally, and let the negative ones slip away. 

Was there something special that made you feel welcomed to a new home?

(Image: Pondview Guest House)

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