An Open Letter From The Type Of Girl In Jon Pardi’s “Ain’t Always the Cowboy”

A man wearing a cowboy hat
Jim Wright

I’m pretty notorious for being a runner when it comes to relationships. Or in almost any situation for that matter. I dive in head first at the beginning, then suddenly pack up and move on without warning. I never really get in too deep, because I know it won’t last long.

I don’t know what it is or when it’s going to happen. Whether it’s something external pulling me away or something internal telling me to get out. But when I start to get that feeling and it won’t be long before I’m out the door. I know I’m not the only one.

Somehow, country music tends to forget about us though. There are a lot of songs about men leaving to chase their dreams, leaving a woman alone and heartbroken. Which has always been perceived as completely acceptable. But what about us women doing the same thing? Sure, there’s plenty of women singing about leaving men for doing wrong and plenty of men singing about getting left for the same thing, but it’s not always that complicated.

Sometimes we just have to go.

Jon Pardi’s new song “Ain’t Always the Cowboy” tells the story from the man’s perspective after being left by one of our free spirits. The beginning portrays the honest reality, we may be quick to pack up and go, but that doesn’t mean it’s the easiest decision. However, it’s probably the right one. You’re not going to change my mind once I’ve made it, so let’s say our tearful goodbyes and watch me go, or don’t. Whatever’s going to hurt less for you, because that’s not my intention.

You might be hurt for a while, because you feel blindsided, but I’m sure I made it clear from the beginning that this is who I am. If you chose to believe that or not is on you. Regardless, I hope that you find a reason to smile about it soon. What we had was probably pretty great, but it was only meant to last for a little while. I’m just “a tumbleweed heart, chasin’ that wind. Goin’ too far, where ever that is.” Our time together filled me up and inspired me to take the next leap. Watch as I fly away to the next adventure, the next accomplishment, or the next step of my journey. It won’t be too another person, because I left for me. In this situation, the old, “it’s not you, it’s me,” line is actually true.

Don’t wait for me. Don’t leave every light in the house on. I won’t be back. This is just how I am and how I’ll always be. Unless one day something or someone makes me want to stay, but then I’ll be the one who’s blindsided. Until then, I’ll just keep up “that restless running, searching for something.’ Leavin’ love in the dust of a midnight Chevrolet.”

Just remember, it ain’t always the cowboy that rides away.

A beer bottle on a dock


A beer bottle on a dock