My dreams were always bigger the city of Toledo could contain. Ironically they took me off to tiny towns in “the middle of nowhere” in Ohio. These are wonderful spaces for higher education, some say. They thought we would focus without any big city distractions. I laughed. We knew few things better than making our own distractions. The small towns made me restless, always longing for more action, more noise, more variety. But when I went to those cities I wanted peace, quiet, the silence of the stars in clear night skies. In these small towns I left my heart and they nurtured my dreams. In them I got to be indecisive, to try on one idea and trade it for another until I found the one that fit just right. In small towns I learned a lot about living and a little about love; about choosing who you call family for the rest of your life; how to be brave from adults who I wanted to be like when I grow up; to never give up; to never stop wanting to know; to speak; to understand; to do everything you can to change the world one student at a time.
The city couldn’t hold my dreams because it was far too full and too busy, trying to hold everyone else’s dreams. I retreated to the places you miss because you don’t get off the highway, to forgotten towns that never forgot my dreams.
December 12, 2012 - Oxford, Ohio