To the Great State Of Texas.
One hundred and seventy five years old today, Texas is the only state that was a TRUE independent republic before joining the United States in 1845. I know some other states claim to have been a republic, but those states were still under the governance of Mexico. They did not issue a Declaration of Independence, nor fight a revolution, nor were recognized by both Mexico and The United States as independent republics.
In a rather providential twist of fate, General Sam Houston was also born on this date.
Now, there are many people who claim to be something called a "naturalized Texan." Well, there is no such a thing. You're either a Texan-- meaning you were born there-- or you're not. And if you're not, well, you're welcome there anyway.
When I first moved here, someone was telling me about her trip to San Antonio. She said that the thing that stood out to her the most was how proud everyone was to be from Texas. She said, "No one's proud of being from Mississippi." Her words, not mine.
When my family and I would visit our kin in Alabama, on our return trip, as soon as we hit the Sabine River Bridge, my brother Russell and I would hold our breaths until we crossed the state line. Then, once we were back in Texas, we would let our breath out and take a big, deep breath of that good Texas air.
One of these days, I'm going to make that trip again. For the final time, I will drive over the Sabine River Bridge holding my breath. And when I cross that state line, I'll take a big, deep breath of that good Texas air. And there I will spend the rest of my days. I will finally be