This I Believe

Jordan - Littleton, Colorado
Entered on March 4, 2009
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: nature

I believe in the powers of the great outdoors. I believe that with the combination of a sleeping bag and a clear night sky, life really opens up. People these days become so caught up in work, relationships, education that they forget to sit back and just reflect. For many this could be reading a book, watching a movie, damn, now a days many just might pop a Xanex. Those things might work for some, but my Xanex is a warm summer night, bright stars and good friends. I think it’s the separation from industrialized society that puts my mind at rest; it wasn’t always the case though. I remember back in my younger years dreading the outdoors, fearing the threatening trees as they casted shadows that would haunt me through the night. It’s a good thing the Blair Witch Project was not on my mind at the time. God knows, I’d be sobbing in my tent all night long. Most of these camping ventures took place with the scouts. We, however, were not the nerdy, short green shorts wearing kind of kids. No, we lit things on fire, melted Barbie dolls, climbed rocks, and shaped twigs into spears with our pocketknives. Had it not been for my little 2.5 inch C.R.K.T knife I kept next to me to protect me from bears, wolfs, mountain lions, and who knows what, I would of lost a lot of sleep. Looking back on my younger, naive years, that pocketknife wouldn’t do a thing to any one of those threats put the peace of mind was there. I think these fears came from the outdoors having a stigma placed against nature after dark. Of course, nature can and is a dangerous place but with respect, people and nature can mesh just fine.

It took me a while to get over those initial fears of the outdoors, but once I broke away I finally could relate with those granola loving, Subaru driving individuals and relax outdoors. Life is sitting with a group of good friends around a campfire watching the logs slowly turn into embers, listening to the wood crackle and watching the sparks float up only to disappear into the night sky. People do not realize how small and insignificant they truly are until they look up into the endless night sky. The cool breeze marches through and everyone hugs their blankets tight; the fire becomes much more appreciated. As the flames die down and friends drift off to sleep I am at peace. It gives me the ability to think and my thoughts always lead me to the same place the sky. I have no explanations for the night sky or its powers but I can attest to the wonders it provides. I believe that people should literally stop and smell the roses once in a while; it might completely change their perspective on life.