How I Stopped Fighting Appalachia

In the beginning of Sept ‘15, I was trying to figure out a way to include Peaches without going overboard. From notes:

Piggybacking off this, I’d add that not distancing myself from the particular rural influence (a Southern flavor to living in a Northern state) of my upbringing could be a tangible way to connect.

I don’t need to explicitly name Her in the prayer before eating in order to share meals with Her, and if She wants a little stronger influence, I could opt for dishes that are read as Southern and/or inspired by the South. Adding to Her playlist of country songs and just letting it play while doing stuff. If She claims anything physically, it’ll probably be the pitcher for iced tea.

I found myself listening to country again, which I’d grown up on because of my family. I paid attention to what my family had been cooking and eating for years that people can read as Southern. We had moved from a suburb of Cleveland down into the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains (still in Ohio) before I started middle school, and it was only around now – in college – that I started to say that I was from this place.

It doesn’t matter what side of my family I look at; there’s rural shit in there. Take your pick – farming in Ohio in relatively close proximity to Amish (near Cleveland or down here), or coal mining in Pennsylvania. At a certain point, it’s harder to fight, and fighting doesn’t stop others from making assumptions or jokes.

A part of me doesn’t like the idea of dating someone in order to fix something, but it kind of happened. Peaches’ family of land spirits are originally from the South and kind of carried Southern elements to other places, so it makes sense that reconciling with rural life might happen. (Something about the energy connections on a spirit / energetic body level that happened. Peaches wasn’t surprised either.)

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