04 November 2010

You're the reason God made Oklahoma

Oklahoma gets a bad rap,  I think.  Sure, it can be windy and dusty and HOT and COLD and full of red dirt and flat.  (Hey, sounds almost just like North Texas :)  But, there are parts of OK that are, well, okay.  Better than okay, really.  There are beautiful parts of Oklahoma. 

We lived in Lawton when Bryan was stationed at Ft. Sill.  Now, Lawton is an Army town.  While it's the only military town I've ever lived in, it's not the only one I've visited, so I think I can generally describe military towns.  They aren't beautiful or fancy or cheerful.  They can be so run-down parts of them are scary.  Most everyone shares a common bond...service to our country...current or past.  No one really puts down roots.  Businesses, like the residents, are somewhat transient.  Businesses that do well are barber shops, dry cleaners, pawn shops, used car lots, and Wal-Mart.  I don't think in our 4+ years in Lawton we ever saw any of those close down.  Many homes look old beyond their years.  It isn't that no one cares.  It's just that homes change owners/renters every few years and many times residents aren't actually occupying their homes much.

Of course, there are good parts of Lawton/Ft. Sill:  the people, many of the restaurants, the memories, it's close to TX(!), the ability to be on Post each evening as the Flag is taken down, the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge.  The Refuge is just beautiful.  And, it's not flat! 

All that to say, sometimes I miss Oklahoma.  I am thankful for Oklahoma and for my time there.  I was priviliged to experience life in the military in Oklahoma and I was priviliged to become a mother in Oklahoma.  Those two events probably contributed most to molding me into the person I am today.  Oklahoma is indeed dear to this Texan's heart!

Today, as our little Okie turns 8, I am so thankful God made Oklahoma!  You see, I do believe God has a plan for everyone and I believe God made Oklahoma for me to birth our sweet, loving, beautiful little first born.  Most family members, and even we, were skeptical about delivering an Oklahoma-born child a mere 40 miles from the Texas border.  We may or may not have even inquired into insurance coverage if we had happened to be at the Target in Wichita Falls, TX when a fast and furious labor began.  However, neither the birth location change nor the fast labor was to be.

Looking back over these 8 years, I wouldn't have changed a thing.  Well, maybe I would've had Addison pick up the pace a bit or had someone anyone figure out she had twisted her little self around so she could have a peek at all those faces as she was forcep-ed out of my loins before it was too late to do anything about it other than grab some huge salad tongs and use them to pry my sweet baby out of my birth canal. (tmi much?)  Okay, so I wouldn't change much.  I certainly wouldn't change the location of her birth.  As much as I love Texas, I wouldn't change that she identifies herself as an Oklahoman and a Texan, and probably a North Carolinian too. :)

Addi's an Okie.  It's part of who she is.  She's fiercely loyal to her birth state, even after only visiting once since we moved away soon after her first birthday.  Some might even find her description of Oklahoma to be exotic.  Her favoritism of Oklahoma is just a part of who she is though.  She is also so kind and loving and funny and clever and thoughtful and sensitive and dependable and stubborn and dramatic and easily embarrassed.  She is a perfectly placed member of our family.

I love you, Addi Pie.  Happy Birthday!  You are my reason God made Oklahoma. ;)