With lifeís ups and downs and the stresses of a hustle and bustle world weighing on you, the best way for me to recharge is to get outside. There is a calming, almost therapeutic, aspect to the outdoors and those who embrace it are typically benefitted by it.
Anyone who has had a child knows what busy is all about. Throw in six weeks of bed rest for mom before delivery and another several weeks for recovery and this guy is going to need a day to decompress. People like me can be caused extra stress by not getting outside enough, or by being forced to spend too much time in a city. Itís important for those who live this way to be near the woods and water, which almost creates withdrawal symptoms when you canít be. For this reason, itís imperative for someone like me to be in a relationship with someone who accepts my lifestyle.
Being a parent is the most amazing and magical experience you could be blessed with. Sharing it with someone who you truly love and seeing them bond and care for your child is awe-inspiring. As with most things in life there are two sides to the coin. To be a real parent means making sacrifices for your family and putting your typical life routine on hold. It doesnít make you a bad person for missing free time or your typical routine, as long as you donít dwell on it and act as if your family has hindered your life. At this point, there are bigger fish to fry and itís not time for relaxation. I keep in mind all the amazing future adventures afield that we will have as a family. Babies donít grow overnight, so itís time to use some of that hard earned patience accumulated from hunting and fishing over the years to keep you grounded until all has calmed down at the homestead.
I find that if I am in a city environment for too long, it starts to weigh on me. When Rachel lived in Columbus Ohio, I would visit for a month or so at a time. We spent most of our days walking and hiking the metro parks that surrounded the city. For me this was the escape that I needed from the highways, buildings, people, and concrete to feel alive. I feel like there is little life in a city and everyone is rushing around trying to find a piece. To me, city life defines death in that almost every living thing must be removed to build one. The sparse tree, bush, or pond is only placed there to create an image of a living environment. We all know where we came from, and for someone like me, the random life in a city just isnít enough.
We as parents have decided to involve our child in the outdoors as much as possible. We will be relaxing at home for a few more weeks as mom recovers from her surgery, then afield we head. Iím sure mom will send me out alone at some point, but Iím pretty sure the experience will be bittersweet. I will enjoy being outside but will miss my family to the extent that I imagine I will cut my trip short. I love Rachel so much, and it kills me to see her stuck inside for so long. We enjoy and spend so much time outside that I canít imagine how she feels. I just canít wait to enjoy the outdoors with my family. But as I said before, my priorities as a father come first. I know in time I will get out into the wild, but until then, I will be happy to spend time and create a closer bond with mom and my little boy.
I feel so blessed to be with Rachel. Even though she doesnít hunt or fish, she supports me in my freezer filling adventures. We both know the healthiest food is created in wild places and utilizing the resource is whatís best for our family. As with any hunter or fisherman, I hope my child will enjoy it as much as I do. The time spent outdoors with children and parents creates a lasting bond and memories that canít be produced anywhere else. I highly recommend getting the family outside as much as possible and if you donít do so, itís never too late to start.
Good wishes and remember to place family before fish.