Several weeks ago, Terry and I ventured on a little getaway to Charleston, SC. I'm always happy to go and always sad to leave. There's really nothing about the "Holy City" that I do not like. For me it's like a lighthouse on a hill beckoning this ship to come. It calls me and I go!
Why is my heart so excited and happy to go? I've pondered over the past few weeks and I keep coming back to the same conclusion.
Charleston is where life really began to take on a new meaning for me.
I was a young, silly 19 year old who had lofty ideas of what being married would look like. In fact, over time, I've realized I was most likely more in love with the idea of marriage than I was with the man I married. I was committed, nonetheless.
We married in August of 1988 and moved to Goose Creek, SC, a community right on the outskirts of North Charleston. Since we only had one car, most often, I would take him to work or he would ride in with a buddy.
He was in the Navy, a submariner and Nuke. His work hours were long and taxing. Giving me plenty of time and reason to explore my new home.
Time and again, I would find myself walking the streets of history in downtown or daydreaming of living on the Battery, while walking through Battery Park. Other days, I would find reason to head to Folly Beach or Isle of Palms to soak up some rays and put my feet in the sand.
Only after 2 months of marriage, he was deployed for six months. Suddenly, I found myself in a place where I knew very few people. With the encouragement of my back home support group, I decided to sublet our apartment and go back home to Columbus, NC.
Retuning wasn't difficult because I could still go to Charleston whenever I wanted. It was a good setup.
Frankie, my first husband, returned in early February from his 6 month deployment. Like a few others, within 6 weeks, we were expecting our first child.
I wish I could tell you there was great elation in such good news. There wasn't. A part of me felt excited and the other part of me was wondering what in the world am I doing.? I'm enjoying life. I love the parties, the nightclubs, taking dares to jump in pools fully clothed. I knew I would have to give up, at least a portion, of my lifestyle. Truthfully, I wasn't sure I was ready.
Little by little, I gave it up. Funny how I didn't really miss it once I was removed from it. This was my first notion and inkling that God was pursuing me. No, I'm not one of those who turned on a dime instantly. I'm just saying, I knew I wanted something more for my child than the lifestyle I was currently living. It was about my move away from being selfish and only thinking of myself and putting someone else's need above mine.
Not only do I love everything Charleston I'm also deeply humbled and thankful for the lessons Charleston taught me. It's really where my heart still calls home and sometimes I must go. One day I may stay.