Farewell Provo

Tiny baby boys everywhere! Hawk, Nixon and Remy (who is not so tiny anymore, hence his distance from these fragile two)

Cousin Dash and Remy love each other.
I make Nixon let me hold him as much as I can. Sweetie baby!
Remy, among many others in this household, loves his aunty Sara. He even got babysat by her for a whole Saturday.

I think I got discouraged from my blog for a little while because the only comments I got were from 'anonymous', which is a euphemism for crappy spam. I know this is pathetic, but I actually opened the email saying I got a comment from anonymous every time, just in case it was a real human with something to say. This is not a cry for comments, but I'd be lying if I said, 'what do I care if no one reads this, I write it only for myself.' I actually don't. I hope people read it on occasion, and that we are better friends because our minds have co-mingled for a few moments. Really, I love tangible, pen and paper journal writing, so I see this as more of a community writing space. Duh, I just defined a blog in case you weren't aware of what they are. I just packed up a huge box of journals from over the years. Which brings me to my real point: aside from the four journals from my mission and the one journal that I took to El Salvador and fell in love with one foreign boy, while still loving one at home, all these journals have been written in this little valley I've called home for nearly 26 years. Provo has raised me. I want to launch here into a list that will likely make me emotional, but I'm not going to do that just yet. My heart does ache a bit, in two ways: one with delight at starting anew, and one with nostalgia at leaving a place and people whom I love so dearly. Oh my goodness, don't even get me started at the ways I love Provo. Suffice it to say that on Saturday, there was a park full of people listening to poetry, setting up a portable art gallery and eating good local food, partly because they were excited about the project (billboard poetry, that is), but I'm sure partly because they were supporting me in one of my odd endeavors, and I think that means more.

So, I'm not going to say farewell Provo just now. And I will be back, oh, I will be back, but I am also trying to remember something that my mission president told me many years ago. I was still a missionary, nearing the end of my mission in Uruguay and thinking that I had reached the pinnacle of all happiness and accomplishment and was not looking forward to coming home. My mission president talked in a zone conference about the importance of our role and attitude when we got back to real life. He reminded us that our mission was not serving much of anyone if we continued to live in the past and spend our time wishing we were a missionary again instead of embracing what was ahead. He said that we would exemplify our happiness as a missionary by being happy at home, in a new situation. I'm trying to remember that. I think it will be hard for awhile, to not feel safe nestled to these mountains and everything this valley contains for me, but I also want my next journey to be painted with the sweetness and joy that I've known here, and for the past 26 years. I don't want to mull around in nostalgia for too long, because I don't think that is what we are supposed to do. I feel like there is a lot more I could say right now, but I also realize that it is a danger to blog late at night, so I'll stop and just post some photos. Hey, if people are reading this, call me! I only have a week left in Provo, and Remy and I want to hang out.


MaryAnne said...

This post made me tear up. I too LOVE Provo! It really makes my heart hurt to think I may not ever live there again.

As I was reading this, Annie kept seeing Remy and saying "Baby James!" That's funny because they don't look at all alike and she sees James everyday.

Keep posting - I read it.

lindsay ross said...

Ash, I never ever miss a blog post. I just don't comment! Please keep posting, Especially while you are in California. Provo will miss you dearly, and won't be the same without you!

Kersey Campbell said...

What did I miss? Where are you going? I wish we were still in Provo so we could hang. But if you're heading out to NYC then we should absolutely hang.

LJ said...

Reading, dear. Always reading. Also, my Hyrum was born like 11 seconds before Remy was. Aren't you loving these little boys?

Cait said...

Do I really never comment?? Shame on me because I know I always think of comments and then am too lazy to leave them because I hate typing on the iPad. Alas. I will start. Oh, Ashley! How i will miss you! And I would call you to hang out but Atticus and I are battling a nasty cold and I am sure you and Rems would rather be spared. Maybe right before you leave?

And we were devastated to miss your billboard project reception. I remembered Sunday morning on the way to my in-laws' house.... Mostly because I love you and everyone, but also I heard the food was going to be great :)

emilia. said...

sometimes i can't read your blog because its so beautiful. i have to be prepared to read—so i wait a few days before clicking on the updated link. and! the fact that you are leaving breaks my heart so bad. please always be my friend. even if we only stay in touch through me reading your blog posts two days after you post them.

i love you.

Chris Spencer said...

We read both yours and Carls blogs. Keep us updated on Stanford. - Much care from Scotland, Cheers - Camille

kathy w. said...

I'm so glad you blog. Also glad that I moved back to Provo in time to catch up a bit with you in our few weeks of overlap before you go.

Keep writing from CA (and posting pictures of cute, cute Rems).

ginni said...

Ending a chapter and starting a new one is hard work! I have a really hard time with 'big' changes, like moving to a new state and establishing you and your family (although I've never done that). But, I've written other chapters in my life-book, and the transitions are just so gall-dang emotional!

Have I ever told you I cry like a baby everytime I finish a book? I think because it reminds me of the discrete nature of life...or something.

paige crosland anderson said...

i read your blog and i'm not commenting because you mentioned that you like comments in your post. but i'm commenting because i felt exactly the same only a few days ago when we were preparing to leave provo without knowing when exactly we'd be back again.

oh provo...i cried in the hotel room our first night in italy. crying for a place that while i didn't think was spectacular for much of the time i lived there, think it's pretty much the best place in the world now.

but that's what's so great about moving. you remember all the reasons why you love your home, and you try your best to take the portable parts with you.

Blue Cheese said...

I'm not anonymous, but I did miss our hang out last night. Sorry. Got home from work at 7 and went to bed at 9:30 bc ran a race this morning. Hope I can catch you for a minute or two before you skedaddle to the PA.

GrittyPretty said...

Ash Mae,
Provo will not be the same without you. Please don't be gone too long and don't fall in love with another place 'cause that would be cheating on dear wonderful Provo! =)

Katie said...

I added blogs to my google reader for all the artists I know from BYU. I rarely comment, but regularly read. I always read yours. Thought you should know. Keep writing.

olivia said...

i could relate to almost every sentence of these paragraphs. shall i list? the huge box of journals, the blogging not for myself but for the community and therefore my love and longing for comments, the provo farewelling and the mission advice. (Sorry, i don't have a journal akin to the el salvador jaunt).

thanks for reminding me about the co-mingling available on your little internet corner over here!