|image via Press Democrat|
In case you are unfamiliar with what has happened to my childhood home, read this: President Obama establishes Point Arena Stornetta Unit of California Coastal National Monument
Now that we are all on the same page, let me tell you a story.
I grew up on what is now the Stornetta Public Lands. This land is where I used to sing, dance, put on photo shoots with my barbie dolls, and dream about the world and all the wonder it held. Sometimes I wished I lived somewhere where I wouldn’t feel so alone; In a lively city where my neighbors were people, not cows. But the solitude of my youth allowed the magic of my imagination to eternally flourish, and for that I am forever grateful.
I know most of you see this land as a place of exquisite beauty in the physical sense, and I see that as well. But I mainly see my childhood. I see all the dreams, and hopes, and memories I had as a kid. When my family sold the land to the state in 2004, we moved the day after my 14th birthday. Even though I had longed for an upbringing in a big city, I was heartbroken to leave. The land was a platform that fed my creativity. It energized me, and forced me to dream as big as it was beautiful. Leaving just didn’t seem right.
With the Stornetta Public Lands becoming a national monument, my young heart that broke all those years ago can now find closure. To me, this signing by President Obama is not only sealing in the deal of timeless land preservation, it’s sealing in the dreams of my childhood, and for anyone who has ever felt alone in the world, where dreams are the only thing that can ignite the magic we all have within us.
Small pieces of my soul are sprinkled like glitter all over those thousands of acres, and they will forever continue to glisten.
This is the land that raised me, and I hope it inspires all of you in the same way it has inspired me. Keep it beautiful.