The Eyes of Texas are Upon You

About two weeks after we arrived in Boston, Kristi asked me if I was homesick for Texas.

I thought, no, of course not. I’m totally settling into the groove here and Texas is nothing but a happy memory now. I was busy with work, the weather was lovely, there were plenty of things to do. No, homesickness was for wimps.

But now, nine weeks after moving, I’m missing Texas.

I know it’s not fair to compare the city you leave behind – somewhere familiar and full of friends – with a new city that is still unknown and a bit lonely. I know, I remember, having some of these same sad lonely feelings when we moved to Texas, feeling like it would never feel like home.

I know that there is a tendency to make the place you’ve left an absolute paradise in your mind, because you aren’t there anymore, forgetting everything you didn’t love about a place (don’t you worry, Bart has not even begun to forget the fire ants).

We were watching the pilot episode of Friday Night Lights recently (yeah, yeah, I know it came out years ago) and there was a shot of the main street. I made Bart pause it, and sure enough, it was the main street of our little city just outside of Austin. There was the church that we went to caucus at last fall. There was the water tower with the donut shop underneath. There was the sidewalk I biked up and down dozens and dozens of times two summers ago on my way to and from work.

I loved Texas. I think Bart was a little shocked by how wholeheartedly I embraced Texas.

I loved the weather, I loved the Texas pride. I loved our little house – the first place we ever owned, I loved HEB (oh you know how I loved HEB), I loved the University of Texas, I loved our many, many, many good friends. I loved the airport (if you’ve ever been in the Austin airport, you should know what I’m talking about). I loved the cheap and direct flights into Las Vegas (with the two hour time difference, we could get in only an hour after departing). I loved the little local library.

I know that it just takes time. That eventually we’ll have good friends here, that I won’t feel like I have no one to call or to hang out with. That someday if we leave Boston, I’ll feel the same crushing sense of loss to be leaving a place I love.

But today is not that someday. Today, Texas is still my home, and I’m homesick.

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  • Reply Mary Frances October 21, 2009 at 12:08 pm

    Hi Janssen! I am delurking to say hello – I found you through Definitely RA, and I so enjoy reading your blog. My husband and I moved from Virginia to Pennsylvania two years ago, and while I know that's nothing like TX-Boston, I completely empathize with your feelings of homesickness (and still feel them from time to time). At any rate, good luck & feel better! (Also, isn't Friday Night Lights awesome?)

  • Reply Kelly J. October 21, 2009 at 1:36 pm

    UGH I Miss Texas so much some days. I had one this past week. I missed knowing it would almost always be sunny and the weather agreeable (maybe hot but agreeable). I miss the tower being lit up at night. I miss HEB! sigh…

  • Reply Jamie Onken October 21, 2009 at 1:45 pm

    I know what you mean. Because we just moved from Los Angeles I seriously can not turn on the T.V. and watch a show with out seeing my home. I miss it, but I am really trying to love this place.
    No need to feel lonely, just give me a call and we'll hang out. I'm in the same boat.

  • Reply David and Sammy October 21, 2009 at 2:21 pm

    Too funny that I was scratching my foot while I was reading this post b/c I got bit by a ton of fire ants yesterday.
    I know I'll miss Dallas when we leave – I can relate with the TX pride feelings.

  • Reply Lisa October 21, 2009 at 2:53 pm

    I left Alabama 7 years ago and I still occasionally think "What? I live in South Dakota? Seriously?" I can't even put my finger on what I miss about the South (well, the BEACH) and yet I do. But I love SD too. It's so much better than they let on before you move here.

  • Reply TheMoncurs October 21, 2009 at 3:01 pm

    You should have seen me mourn California after our move when I was 14. It was frightening.

  • Reply Douglas Carl October 21, 2009 at 3:52 pm

    I think of singles moving into a city like Boston without friends and I wonder how they do it. I'm glad you have Dale to keep you company most of the time. I think it takes a good year to develop new and good friends, doesn't it?

  • Reply Kristi October 21, 2009 at 4:58 pm

    I'm right there with you pal. And it really helped that Meleah and Ralphie called and left me a message saying they were on their way to firebowl together. Some friends : )

  • Reply Becca October 21, 2009 at 5:14 pm

    Amen Janssen. That's all I need to say. I hear you.

  • Reply Heather October 21, 2009 at 5:27 pm

    Well put. I am soon to leave a place I've lived for eight years. I can't even imagine what it will be like. Love that you found your little town highlighted in that movie! Hope the homesickness is shortlived.

  • Reply Emily October 21, 2009 at 5:49 pm

    I definitely could have written this very post (substituting NYC or Utah for Texas and Vegas for Boston…)

  • Reply Sarah October 21, 2009 at 6:13 pm

    Yeah, miss those HEB warm tortillas! You would think they would have those in AZ too – but I have yet to find them!

  • Reply ellen October 21, 2009 at 6:36 pm

    I'll be your Boston friend!

  • Reply Science Teacher Mommy October 21, 2009 at 7:36 pm

    Oh, HEB, my heart is full.

    I miss my ward there. So much.

  • Reply Packrat October 21, 2009 at 7:38 pm

    Very good post. Every place we leave, we leave a bit or quite a bit of us behind. We also take with us the warm memories, and some of the local color/culture. It is part of life, but it doesn't necessarily make it any easier. Hugs.

  • Reply Bean October 21, 2009 at 7:52 pm

    I'm sorry you're homesick! Especially with moving so far away from Texas, that's hard! Hang in there 🙂

    P.S. It's ok if you want a cannoli not because I'm there but because you want one yourself. 😉
    P.S.S. Thank you for the sweet compliment about my hair! Made my day!

  • Reply artemisia October 21, 2009 at 7:53 pm

    Thinking of you! I still get bouts of homesickness for DC – nearly six years later.

  • Reply katydid October 21, 2009 at 8:18 pm

    Oh HEB my love. I miss it so much! Utah just doesn't get it. Haha. Great food. The tender sushi man that makes things in his little booth. The Grillers. Ahh. The friendly signs and lay out. The deli. The squares of cake they sell. Why oh why oh why. Haha. I kind of like food…

  • Reply megan October 21, 2009 at 8:31 pm

    Sorry, Janssen. Maybe another canolli (I don't know how to spell!) will help. Or a new pair of shoes. Tell Bart I said it was a good idea 🙂

  • Reply hollyhs October 21, 2009 at 9:52 pm

    oh, i'm sorry sweetie. i feel that way about st. george every time we drive through. it just felt like "home" and it was hard to leave. but you're right, with a little time, you'll be loving boston! 🙂

    i love reading your blog. you're so great at expressing your thoughts…

    have a good week!

  • Reply nancypearlwannabe October 21, 2009 at 11:39 pm

    Aww… I hope Boston starts to feel more like home soon. If you ever need someone to call or some random girl time, you know I'm around!

  • Reply Peaceful Reader October 22, 2009 at 1:12 am

    I totally know this feeling as we have moved three times in 5 years! Always friends and favorite hangouts are left behind.

  • Reply Trish October 22, 2009 at 3:24 am

    Awwww. 🙁 I'd miss Texas, too, if I weren't here. I LOVE Texas. Neither my husband nor I were born here but we fully embrace that Texas motto–we weren't born here but we sure got here as fast as we could. 😛

    Isn't it the best darn state ever? LOL!

  • Reply Liz October 22, 2009 at 7:21 pm

    You only think someplace else will ever feel like home. This, my dear, is the magic of Texas. You don't embrace Texas…it embraces you.

    I could go on and on poetically about the wonderful place that is my homeland (and in fact, I did for several minutes in my head while deciding what to actually write). You have only lived in one place in Texas.

    I have lived in Beaumont, Austin, Dallas (two different suburbs), and San Antonio. And let me tell you, the magic never goes away.

    * clap clap clap clap clap clap clap* Deep in the heart of Texas!

  • Reply Kay October 22, 2009 at 9:18 pm

    AND Texas misses you just as much!!!! hugs!

  • Reply Allison October 24, 2009 at 4:34 pm

    We miss you here! It's not the same without you and Bart. I hope you start feeling like Boston is your home soon!

  • Reply Melissa October 27, 2009 at 3:50 pm

    It will get better with time and new friendships. My first week in Indiana, I thought, am I insane. I left Florida to move here.

    I now have wonderful friends who I adore and a place for myself that makes me feel like a better person. I've grown in my new locality. I still miss my friends back in Florida and visit with them. Each time I lose touch with someone it breaks my heart, but I have so much in my new home, I know I belong here.

    You'll feel the same with time.

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