In my youth, I remember the times spent at my family's tree farm in central Wisconsin. It was such a magical place filled with memories of running free and wild in the forest, fields and falling out of the canoe into the pond.
I remember the huge dinners we would have. So many people from family to friends would gather. We would make so much food on the outdoor grill. Stories told as we sat in the porch with 30 to even sometimes 50 people enjoying a delicious home cooked meal. We would go out late at night to catch the stars, moon and northern lights while getting glimpses at the bats.
I remember the times spent in Southern Illinois and in the Appalachia Mountains of West Virginia. I still go back every year multiple times to these places to visit family and the forests and mountains but visiting honestly is getting to be not enough anymore. The dream I'm working tirelessly for is to one day be permanently living amongst the forest, its seasons and running free and wild once again as I did as a child. There is no greater feeling than that sort of freedom.
I can't wait to spend so many nights in the woods, gardening much of my own food, drinking fresh birch sap and seeing where the inspirations of nature takes my creativity. I can feel the time getting nearer as the forest calls me home.
It's no wonder with my heritage that the forest and I have such a strong connection. Even today, as I finish out my time living here in the big city area, I must immerse myself as much as possible in nature and do what I can.
One way or another, soon, the day will come that my dream will become my reality. I cannot wait to feel what that happiness feels like.