I’m obsessed with cowboys. I don’t know why. I think it started when I was a Freshman in high school. My sister had just broken up with a guy. It was rough. I figured she needed to listen to some heart break music, so I turned all of the radio stations in the house to country (my dad quickly reclaimed control of his radio).
Anyway, my sister recovered. She went back to her station, but I never switched back. Something about the music called to me. For some reason, it feels like home. Odd, considering I’m from a small town on the western shore of Michigan, but it happened.
Then I went off to college – at a small school in a small town in southern, central Michigan. There was nothing particularly country or cowboy about my time there. In fact, I joined a sorority and spent a lot of time tuned into the hip-hop scene (did I just say that?).
Even though I loved going out dancing, when I graduated my radio found itself back on the country music stations. I had disappeared for months, but the songs welcomed me back with a hug and a howdy.
I moved back to central, western Michigan because I didn’t know what I was going to do with my life, but if someone had gone with me I would have moved to Tennessee. I don’t know why, but something about me wanted to go. I never made it. In fact, I moved even further north to a part of the world that looks nothing like the farms and fields of my dreams.
I never gave up my fantasy of marrying a cowboy, though. Then I got married, and that dream died. I wasn’t lucky enough to find an actual rancher around here. Instead, I was blessed with a redneck (there’s a difference – my hubs prefers camo pants to cowboy boots).
Still, I dream. I imagine that some day I’ll live in Montana. Matt will wear tight jeans (they can be camo if he wants), the boots and hats. We’ll ride horses (I’ve never even been on one). I’ll have a porch with a rocking chair. I wouldn’t even mind a neighbor named Slim (though I don’t know if I could call him that without giggling).
And so the dream continues. I don’t know how country music sucked me into this world, but I’m “here”. I don’t have the clothes or the experience, I live in the wrong part of the world, and I’m married to Yooper Stewart, but I still imagine…someday.