Like most kids, I wished I’d been born anywhere but where I was. Bored on hushed Sunday afternoons and pushing myself on the tire swing in our backyard, I constructed elaborate daydreams about my life when I could leave my two-stoplight Deep Southern town behind. I scrubbed my voice clean of its syrupy accent. Dressing in preppy khaki skirts and polos or “artsy” chokers and all black everything, I internally rolled my eyes at dumb hicks who wore cowboy boots and listened to country music. I kept my boyfriends’ hands from traveling south of my Fossil leather belt and applied to colleges up north. I took the good life I had in my sweet town for granted. Like most kids, I was an asshole.