There’s nothing quite like coming home
The kids were ecstatic when I told them we were moving home in just one week. April and I were pretty darn happy as well.
You see, we had been in Guatemala for two and a half months living and working with a group of missionaries, and we were heading home — back to New Hampton.
The journey had been long with its own share of ups and downs. We have been so humbled by what God has done. We are grateful for the people we’ve met, the experiences we’ve had, and for the ever-so-small glimpse at the beautiful and wonderful heart of God that reaches out for “the least of these”.
Reaching out for the heart of the indigenous Guatemalan peasant, for my heart, and for yours.
But this piece is not about that. This is about moving home.
The joy of having a home — people you love and who love you in return. A community where you can really know people and they can know you (for better or worse).
Since our family moved to New Hampton in 2010, we’ve lived in three houses, had three babies in our little hospital (delivered by the best of friends), attended to the births as well as the deaths of many of your family members — those we also hold dear.
We have laid down roots.
Our four precious little ones have run around with yours at the wooden wonderland and may have gotten you wet jumping into the pool most afternoons in the summer. They’ve met your parents and grandparents on rounds at New Hampton Nursing and Rehabilitation Center and Linn Haven.
We’ve eaten bushels of popcorn from the best ACE Hardware (and Theisens!) in America and gallons of ice cream from Sno Cream.
We love our church and our kids’ school (there are a lot of GREAT schools and churches in our community!) and are proud of the many small businesses in New Hampton that make this country great. We have had the opportunity to laugh and cry with so many of you.
In a world so disconnected, lonely, and busy, New Hampton is a light on a hill — still holding out hope for a family to grow and thrive in a good old fashioned slice of Americana.
Nope, It’s not perfect - no place is. But it’s home.
Growing up, my family moved around a lot. In fact, we’ve now lived in New Hampton longer than I’ve lived anywhere in my life. It has been jokingly said that you’re not truly from a small town until you buy a cemetery plot there.
However, for the past eight years, you have opened your hearts and homes to us and allowed us to become part of your community. Thank you for that. We still haven’t bought cemetery plots, but this is our town.
This is home and our children’s only hometown. It is great to be home. It is great to be a Chickasaw.
Dr. Paul McQuillen is a a physican at Mercy Medical Center-New Hampton.