Moving to Lassen County, specifically to Janesville was one of the most difficult things I had experienced in many years. I came from an area that boasted of 600,000+ people and wasn’t short on any convenience. Everything was as close as a 15-minute drive away. As a pilot’s daughter I enjoyed visiting remote little towns but never imagined moving to such a place until 2 years ago.
December 31st will be the 2nd anniversary of my arrival. Culture shock is how I described my move to my many friends and family I left behind. When they asked where Janesville was I jokingly said, “It is somewhere between where the heck am I, and are we there yet.” But even the humor couldn’t replace the aching in my heart over all that I had left behind. The slower pace of life here slowly became my new normal. I was able to quickly get my 5 adopted children enrolled in school, Hubby had his work and for the first time in many years I was alone and caught in the many thoughts that flooded my heart. Thoughts of the work I did with the homeless in our community, thoughts of my many friends and my precious family.
To say I cried often is truly an understatement. One day while the children were at school, hubby had the day off and he decided to get me out of the house and took me to a local diner for breakfast. It was there I found this magazine. I grabbed it, rolled it up, and shoved it in my purse for something else to read thinking to myself, honestly, you can only read the same newspaper so many times in one week. Later that day as the children settled into bed I fell into my usual comfortable spot on the couch and opened Mountain Valley Living. I thought “Sure!! There is not that much living to be had in this place, why in the world would they have a magazine.” As I opened the magazine I went directly to the Publishers page and it was like sweet honey reading her words. She truly loved her home and for the first time I realized, that possibly, just maybe there WAS life tucked away in this place for me. As I scanned the many pages I began to see clearly that there was living that could be done here, and not just done but enjoyed. I saw photos of majestic mountains, of babbling brooks, of beautiful blue skies and the loss that I felt began to slip away. I looked forward to every new edition and I would read each article trying to see life through the author’s eyes and an amazing thing began to take place. Hope came. I started to visit some of the places I saw in the articles I had read about. I learned about some of the local businesses and their history. I began to fall in love with my home nestled in the Northern region of California.
Just recently a young woman who had been relocated to our community came into my little boutique. As I looked into her face I saw something familiar. I asked her if she had just came to our neck of the woods, she shook her head and I told her that I knew how she felt and that she wasn’t alone. Tears filled her eyes as I spoke to her about all the beauty that surround us and handed her a copy of Mountain Valley Living, explaining to her that it was a life line and how it encouraged me through my transition period… as she walked out I noticed she rolled it up and put it in her purse, just like I did. I was confident that she would, like me, use this magazine as a road map to all that Northern California has to offer… and, like me, fall in love with her new home. I want to continue with these final thoughts, while this magazine boasts of so many different aspects of our community it is exactly that, a community, business owners as well as neighbors warm the many pages of this magazine and I truly hope to someday meet them all.