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Where corn don't grow

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By Vanessa Hurst

Corn grows all over LaRue County. It’s hard to drive anywhere and not see corn growing. So I think you’ll understand when I tell you there’s a song, sung by Travis Tritt, called “Where Corn Don’t Grow” (I know here I go again with my musical references).

It starts out with a son sitting on the front porch of the house where he was born and raised staring at the dusty fields where his dad worked hard every day. He’s sitting with his father and asked his dad if he ever “dreams about a life where corn don’t grow.” His dad sits there silently staring at his coffee cup. Then with mixed emotions he looks at his son and says; “Son I know at your age seems like this whole world is turning slow and you think you’ll find the answer to it all where corn don’t grow. Hard times are real, there’s dusty fields no matter where you go. Son you may change your mind ‘cause the weeds get high where corn don’t grow.”

The son leaves home only to find that the weeds do in fact get high where corn doesn’t grow, “I can’t say he didn’t warn me this city life’s a hard row to hoe. Ain’t it funny how a dream can turn around where corn don’t grow?”

What is it about this song and cornfields, where am I going with this?

I took this job two years ago partly to help our family and also to try my hand at making a career. I won’t lie, I was excited about the prospect of working for a newspaper with all the challenges I’d face, potential accolades it may bring and the chance to grow and expand my talents. I went from being a part-time at the office and work from home mom/graphic designer to a fulltime 40 hour a week news reporter and page designer and everything that comes with it.

Balancing work and home became a challenge. Most of the compromising was done at home and sadly it came down to my kids, in the first year, asking me why I had to work so much. They grew used to the new schedule and adapted to life with a working mom, which made it easier for me to continue.

As time went on I began carrying my work with me, everywhere. Not in the literal sense, I didn’t have papers, computer and camera trailing behind me, well maybe sometimes. Stories and news would hang around in my mind until they were written and sometimes even long afterward. I’ve been fortunate to not have very many difficult or devastating things to write about, but there have been a few.

I used to think I was an unstoppable force; I have been humbled time and again by the realization that I am just as human as the rest of humanity. I also realize now what I need in life isn’t what I thought I needed and there is absolutely nothing wrong with wanting mediocrity and having a desire to simply make my little corner of the world a peaceful sanctuary for my family; it is where I find the most fulfillment.

It is with mixed emotions that I announce I am leaving the Herald News. I miss my family in ways a full time job won’t allow me to have. I miss baking and cooking everything from scratch and I miss having a garden to tend. I have sacrificed things I hold dear to make this lifestyle work and it’s time I get those things back.

I will miss my Lost in LaRue trips and talking to people about my travels through out the county, I will miss writing and seeing all the familiar faces I’ve come to know. But I need to slow down and focus on my family for a while; I’m tired and I miss my “cornfields.” There have been some fun and exciting times and I cherish all the friends and memories I’ve made working here. Thank you, friends, for allowing me to be part of your community.