Several months ago, our family of six left our home in Vermillion for a job in Minot, ND. Leaving the house where two of our four boys were born was hard, but not nearly as hard as leaving the people of South Dakota.
Between myself and my husband, we have lived in almost every state in the U.S., and, in spite of all its shortcomings, I would choose South Dakota every day of the week. There is something inherently HUMAN there. My husband has a history in Elk Point, Vermillion and the Hills and I never quite understood what this "thing" was that made him all misty-eyed when he talked of South Dakota. Always talking about what a wonderful place it was, how the people are so "solid," yet remembering his struggle to find work in the '70s and how hard his ancestors worked and never "got ahead."
One minute I could see the longing in his eyes, the wheels spinning as to why we would leave two productive careers in Florida, sell the house he built in the country there, for such an uncertain future. The next minute, a definite "NO I will NOT work for low wages again, I will not move back there yet again just to lose."
Well, we did anyway. And we lost. Money. But what we gained in perspective and true friendships far outweighs the cost. We're right smack in the middle of the same problem again, seven years later, and you know what the crazy thing is? More than anything right now I want to come back and lose some more.
May you all realize this New Year what is truly important to you. Maybe "getting ahead" is really about learning to lose.