I love my community of friends …

I love each one for the uniqueness they offer, and I love that some spill over from our children’s school to our church. We get to walk together and worship together!


Growing up, I had the privilege of living in Pittsburgh for ten years and belonging to a church where everyone was transplanted so we were our own little family. We celebrated every holiday together and were one big family.


Then we moved to New Jersey, a small town, where we were given a sense of belonging with one family in particular and to this day, they are still my Mom-Mom and Pop-Pop!


After leaving that family and moving to yet another new state, I had selective mutism for almost a month. I think it was my way of coping; although it would be more accurate (in my case) to call it avoidance.


Eventually I made friends there too and grew to love each state, each experience, each group of people as much as the others.

I have now lived in the same place the LONGEST in my whole life. I tease my husband (we live in the same community he grew up in and some of our children went to the same school he did) that when I married him, not only did I marry an amazing guy, but he gave me roots.


There was something to be said about moving around, experiencing different parts of the United States and being introduced to a variety of cultures, ways of life, and the differing lifestyles depending upon which part of the country where you live. The East Coast tends to be a more fast-paced culture; “out west” tends to be a little more laid back, and the mid-west is a little in between.


However, there is also something wonderful about putting down roots and doing life, day in and day out, with others, having that security that we have time to develop deep friendships through living life together.


While my husband and I are willing to move if God tells us “time’s up,” I’m not feeling as though that’s His plan anytime soon. I feel settled, I feel happy, and I have some of the best friends ever – both older ones from all over the country as well as those I get to do life with year after year right here.


What has been your experience? Have you moved around a lot (like I did in childhood) or are your roots firmly planted?


© Cheri Swalwell 2019




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