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Regarding the Sweet Corn Fields of Ontario and The Unusual Delights of a Corn Smoothie

As I descended farther into row upon row of tall corn, I became lost in such a welcome way—the warm summer sun kissing my skin, craggy stalks brushing against my cheeks as I passed, the soft breeze at my back.

At times, nothing could cure that sinking feeling of loneliness and loss I felt as a young girl; the yearning to belong, to fit in, and the mourning that came with realizing that maybe I never would. Most days, I questioned my place in the world and wondered if life would ever get better.

But in the sweet corn fields of Ontario, I wasn’t just a shy, lanky kid afraid of her own shadow. I wasn’t strange or awkward; I was a lone adventurer traveling into the heart of my kingdom—my domain. In this place, I could get away from it all. The trees didn’t care that I was growing into my looks, the grass didn’t mind that I was quiet, and the corn kept swaying despite my awkwardness.

In that place, I called the shots. In those fields, I made my own way. Up and over the rolling hills, down to the creek where frogs hopped and tadpoles danced, and into the forest where maples dripped with sweet syrup. Hiding and seeking—I suppose I was playing a bit of both. I was hiding from who they told me I was and seeking who I knew I could be.

corn

Andreana Bitsis

To some, it was just a silly game in a corn field in rural Ontario. But to me, that place was alive with a magic that made anything possible. It’s where I could be whoever I wanted to be, and where I could scrape together my shattered confidence and escape from it all.

I’m all grown up now, and these are just recollections, just shadows. In those days, our closest neighbor was five miles down a dirt road. Now I live in a condo with neighbors on every side. I’m no longer painfully shy, and my lanky frame filled out. Back then, I longed to fit in. But now I embrace being different and wear my uniqueness as a strange badge of honor.

Now I know that I was extraordinary all along; I just needed to find my way. At times, I still feel like that awkward ten-year-old wandering through a labyrinth of corn, looking for a place to call her own, and when I do, I close my eyes and find myself in those fields again.

As an ode to those rural corn fields in Ontario— and to that shy, wonderful girl with a big imagination—I’d like to share an unconventional recipe: a corn smoothie. Because sometimes being different is a surprisingly sweet affair. Blend, sip, and enjoy– from one nature lover to another.

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