I’ve traveled quite a bit this summer, both out of state and out of the country. Every beautiful place I’ve visited has been unique in its own way – seeing the gorgeous cliffs over the Pacific Ocean in California, watching monkeys jump through the trees in Costa Rica, the intense blue skies of New Mexico- this is one gorgeous world we live in! Every time I’m away I think, “Could I see myself living here?” Would I be happy living in California, Costa Rica, New Mexico, or anywhere else? Maybe so. But then I return home to Oklahoma and remember why I never want to live anywhere else on earth.
If you haven’t been to Oklahoma a few things might come to mind:
- The musical, Oklahoma (O-K-L-A-H-O-M-A, Oklahoma!)
- The Oklahoma City Thunder
That’s probably it, right? If you have been here though, you know we’re more than tornadoes and basketball (We’re still reeling a bit from KD’s departure. Dagger to my heart!). You’ve met the people, you’ve heard the stories, and you’ve heard about the “Oklahoma Standard”.
When I was 12 years old Oklahoma City was attacked in a domestic terrorist bombing, killing 168 people and injuring hundreds more. Our state was rocked to the core. We would show more strength and compassion that day and the days following, with all eyes of the nation on us. Unfortunately, our days of tragedy weren’t over.
In my relatively short lifetime, Oklahoma has experienced numerous devastating tornadoes, a few in particular causing catastrophic damage and taking the lives of many. Homes were lost, sometimes only to be rebuilt and lost again. Schools and businesses all taken. Again and again, strength and compassion were our response.
What’s remarkable about Oklahoma isn’t the number of tragedies we’ve faced, it’s the people who have faced them. The term “Oklahoma Standard” was coined after the bombing, as visitors noticed how we rose together, instead of hiding in fear. The standard has continued since then. When bad things happen, we show up. When good things happen, we show up.
Oklahoma isn’t defined by loss, it’s defined by the outpouring of love we show to each other. It’s the hardworking men and women in our communities. The children. The arts. The culture. The history. It’s the millions of stars we can see in the sky at night. When you don’t have mountains and forests to block your view, you can see forever. :)
I love to travel and plan to see the world the rest of my life. One thing will always remain: Oklahoma is home.
I’m proudly showcasing my state with this necklace from Cents of Style. This weekend they’re just $11.99 with free shipping! (Discount ends on Sunday, 7/17/2016.)
*I received this necklace for free and this post includes an affiliate link. All opinions on the great state of Oklahoma are my own!*