This is where our hearts are ...

Guest CommentaryFebruary 4, 2014 

The children and I moved to Oakhurst in 2007. Since the day we arrived I felt like this was the best decision I've ever made. It just fit like a glove from day one.

In 2012 I was getting pressure from family members in Ohio to move back there.

My family has many family traditions throughout the year. So it's been difficult to be so far away from them. The kids felt like they were missing out on family events. I was very happy with the way things were going here, and I felt leaving was risky since we didn't know what to expect. I was offered a job in Ohio making double my salary here. Still it was the hardest decision I have ever made. I did not want to leave Oakhurst.

However, my kids are my life and they felt very strongly about being closer to family. So we left.

Unfortunately, we had four family members pass away in the first four months.

At work the pay was great but I did not love my job. The children were struggling in school, not making friends. We were not happy. We felt like we were forcing it to feel like home for the sake of our family.

It was great seeing the family and being involved with the traditions but it just wasn't home. We all discussed it and decided if good or bad is going to happen we want it to happen in Oakhurst. This is where our hearts are.

A year in a big city was enough for us. In August 2013, we packed up the car and took a cross country trip home to Oakhurst. We are so happy to be back in this community. To know absolutely where you belong and have a new appreciation for it is an amazing feeling.

I love that this is a community that volunteers for everything like emptying trash bins around town, and policing the community park to make it safe for the kids — the list goes on and on. A community that pitches in when someone is in need, and that really makes people feel loved and welcomed.

Even my children 16, 14, and 10 are so thankful to live in this community. They also chose to come home and give up the big city life. I'm so proud of them and proud to be one of you.

I thank each and every one of you — it's because of you that this community is our home.

— Christi Long, Oakhurst

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