Thursday, October 25, 2012

We are Neff Road

Some might think that I have not left my past behind. I would say to them, "You didn't have my past." Perhaps Neff Road is a frame of mind. The simplicity of life that not everyone can understand. A way of looking at the world from a pod of neighborhoods on the west side of Ohio. A pod of loving and caring friends and neighbors.

I love Oregon. I moved to one of the most beautiful states I've ever seen. My move here took place in 1978. Yes, most of my life I have been an Oregonian. I was struggling to keep a marriage together that had suffered irreparable damage. Where could I go? I went home to the farm.

For the first time, my parents sheltered me from everyone. They gave me and my children a place to rest, to heal while I made decisions that would change our lives one way or the other. It was January. Snow had fallen and the hill was white and waiting. Dad pulled out the old sled, the sled that I have now. I sat behind my children, and Dad gave us a shove. I was home once more. I stayed for a month before returning to a different life. I returned stronger from going to my roots.

You might wonder why I didn't return to Neff Road. I knew that I couldn't return to the life I had before I left. I knew that I could not take the kids away from their father in Oregon. I was strong enough to leave knowing that I would take Neff Road with me in a way I did not before. I found a relationship with my parents that I did not have before.

Neff Road was the womb that birthed me. The friends and neighbors there made me who I am today. My journeys back to Neff Road in the past twenty years have not always been easy. Most have been to say 'good-bye' to loved ones. It has been easier than I thought it would be, because I know I am always surrounded by those who were part of that loving family of Neff Road.

We are Neff Road.

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