Within the last year, The Southern Mercantile has made so many new friends! We love that we are gaining new followers so that we can continue to share our love for the South. Since many of you are still getting to know us, we thought that we would repost our Coming Home stories--how we got to where we are today. Our usual blog posts give you a glimpse into who we are, but our coming home stories are so much more. We would love for you to take a minute (or two, or three!) to read Roxie, Jorjanne and Tara's stories of what brought them home.
Like Tara and Jorjanne, I grew up in this small Georgia town called Ocilla. The main difference in our stories is that I don’t have generations of family that lived here before me. I have mentioned before that my mother is from Virginia, and my father is from Colorado. They met at college in Tennessee and moved here in the 70’s. Lack of family ties can really make one feel like an outsider from time to time, but it can also show you the power of good friendships!
I grew up in a small town. Scratch that. I grew up in a rural community outside of a small town. Next door to my grandparents’ farm and within a mile of the county line, I was the first one on the school bus every morning and the last one off every afternoon. Keep in mind, we have one elementary school, while the middle and high schools share a campus, for the entire county!
I have been home now for two and a half years, and almost married a year. I can feel my roots beginning to sink again. Growing up in a small town and moving back to that small town as an adult are two very different experiences. I spent four vital years of my life in a different area where people see things differently, eat differently, speak differently, treat each other differently, dress differently and well, live differently.(Granted, I was only 3 hours away in Athens, GA, but there is no comparison.) I was allowed the freedom to experience other cultures and lifestyles—while taking note mentally and inwardly beginning to shape my own. I wouldn't trade those years for anything—because if nothing else, I learned to love differently.