There's a few inconveniences that come with living in a small town.
For one, shopping can be somewhat limited.
Another one is there's not a lot of restaurants for the rare occasions I want to go out to eat.
A third one is that anytime I want to even go to the grocery store, it's a 20-minute drive. We're not exactly close to the few things we do have.
I'm not going to lie, it has been a period of adjustment, even though we've lived here for nearly 13 years.
At first, I felt incredibly isolated.
We didn't know anyone or have any family here, which made it feel even more isolating.
We had moved here from a town that was quite a bit bigger and had all of the modern conveniences we could want or need while maintaining that charm and character of a smaller town.
I grieved that town for a while after we moved here and once, declared I was just going to go back.
Since then I have yearned for the small town I grew up, that has become quite the quaint little place.
"I wanna move home!" I cried one day.
But I wasn't sure which "home" I was meaning.
The small town I grew up in, with Mama, my Uncle Bobby, their feral cat collection and the majority of my cousins was one home. I had spent the first 25 years of my life trying to get out of there and more than likely would spend another 25 trying to get back.
The city we moved from felt like home.
And at least we did have family there.
"I wish you would move home," Mama tells me daily. "I feel like y'all are just lost and alone up there."
I understand how she feels. The friends we have are in other counties, so it's not like we see them every day or can meet up on a spur of the moment for coffee.
Add in curvy mountain road and bad weather to the distance and you have a combination that practically guarantees you don't see people as much as you'd like.
"It's like we live in Alaska," Cole commented one day.
Thankfully, it really wasn't, but I could understand his comparison.
And then, it happened.
We had gone to the grocery store one evening and hoped to get back before the storms started.
After we hurriedly put the groceries in the back, the car wouldn't start.
Lamar tried it again.
Nothing. The lights on the dash weren't even lighting up.
"Try it again!" I implored.
It was probably 80 degrees, the sky was dark with storm clouds and I had two things of ice cream in the back.
Even though Mama was over 2 hours away, I texted her to let her know.
Instead of texting her response, she called. "What are you going to do? Do you want us to come up there and get y'all? Y'all don't have anyone up there...."
As I was telling her we'd be OK, Lamar got out to check under the hood again when the lady that was parked next to us arrived and offered to help.
They tried for about 10 minutes and still nothing.
We profusely thanked her as she left.
Cole, in the backseat, had found the ice cream. "Don't judge me; I was being proactive and didn't want it to melt," he explained.
Two more people stopped to help before someone arrived who could jump the battery.
"Are y'all OK? How can we help?" they each asked as they pulled up beside us.
"You know, if we had been in a big city, no one would have stopped to help," Lamar said as we made our way home.
"Why is that?" Cole asked, still eating ice cream.
I wasn't sure, but it was true to an extent. People were always in a rush and didn't want to get involved in a bigger city. Maybe they were more jaded and thought everything was a scam or perhaps they were so focused on their lives they didn't notice strangers in a parking lot with a dead battery.
But here in my little small town, they did. In fact, it was several.
Suddenly, I didn't feel quite as isolated anymore. Sure, it's a small town but there's some big blessings hidden there.