Many people, when finding out that I hunt, asked the question Why? Sometimes I get tired of hearing the same question time and time again, but then I realize that these people have never experienced what I have. To make matters worse, I am a woman, and that makes it even harder for people to take in.
I have been hunting now for about 17 years and they have been some of the best years of my life. I grew up in Canada and never heard of hunting. My family or friends didn't hunt and so it was not an issue for me. When I met my husband, from South Carolina, I was hit hard with the sport. You see he had been hunting for a good 20 years or so and it was a way of life for him. From August 15th until January 1st he was gone to the club whenever possible. I figured that if I wanted to see him, I would have to join in and join in I did. We can all look back now and laugh. This poor man opened a pandora's box when he invited me to hunt. Not only did I take his stand and clothing but, let's face it, I had to have a gun.
All four of our children have grown up hunting. I killed my first deer when I was pregnant! I wouldn't want it anyother way. How many parents can say that they know where their children are on the weekends. We can! They are with us in the woods or around the campfire hearing stories of old. Oh, the stories are repeaters but the kids love to hear them. Hunting has taught my children to respect nature and to respect their elders. These old fellas we hunt with do not stand for any disrespect and so not only are my husband and I teaching the children, but so are the other folks we spend time with.
There is nothing finer than to be in the middle of the woods. There is no phone, no television, no beepers, no traffic. Just the noises of birds chirping, squirrels barking, and the beauty of the woods. God sure did a great job! I remember one morning a doe came out to feed and she looked up at me. I started playing games with her by moving my head when she wasn't looking or changing my position. This went on for a good five minutes or so. We were so intent on eachother that we almost missed the large hawk that dove down and caught a mouse. Both of us were startled but then remembered who we were supposed to be watching. I laugh about that today and have played the game with many other deer.
All the stress of daily living, raising four children, wondering how we will make ends meet seem to vanish when I am out in the wilderness. My whole body relaxes and I find myself so in tune with everything around me. The excitement builds as the first deer pops its head out to feed. And if I'm lucky, I can be proud to bring home some of the best tasting meat there is to feed our family. Hunting isn't just about the kill. As a matter of fact, most people don't realize that more times than not a deer isn't killed. I pass many deer up for one reason or another. Hunting is about good living, getting in touch with one's self.
So if I had to give one answer as to why I hunt, it would have to be this...It brings me closer to God, nature, my family and good friends.
Happy Hunting Everyone.