I can feel the season’s change in the air. Summer is easing into fall, leaves slowly yellowing, the air crisp, the tip of my nose cold.
This may be the last night I am able to sleep in one of my favorite places on earth. Granted I have many favorites, but there is nowhere quite like the Russell Island raft in Upper Glacier Bay, from which I snuggle deep inside my sleeping bag, outside on the back deck, looking up towards the majestic cloud-laced mountains, listening to distant waterfalls, gently floating one foot above sea level. I love it here. This place has become familiar and comfortable, an escape into wilderness, a place to dream of things to come; indulge in opinionated conversation, practice unperfected music and create handcrafted meals. Every field season has its flavor and this one, in Glacier Bay National Park, is no less delicious or unique in taste.
Night falls early now. The shrubs are heavy with late summer berries. The salmon are headed streamward. Each day autumn feels closer, approaching steadily, determined and unwavering, bringing colder nights and frequent rain. I find comfort in the change. As the field season closes, I feel ready for transformation, ready for whatever the future may bring.
The feeling of uncertainty settles in my heart and I nestle into it like a childhood blanket. I embrace it like an old friend; we pick right back up and it’s like we never parted.
So I write a love letter.
A love letter to this familiar feeling.
I think if you often. I know we haven’t always got along. We fought. I resisted you. I struggled, tried to run away, but you were always there, with undying patience, waiting for me to breath through my frantic fragility when I thought time was slipping through my fingers. You watched my anxiety from the sidelines, quietly knowing that you were not the fear I had created but only the truth of change. In fact, you were liberation, empowerment; you were and are a constant companion, a reason to love and live this life to the fullest. I’ve come to accept you, even love you. I love how you make me feel excited, exhilarated, ready to take on the world. You’ve taught me not to fear the unknown but revel in it. I remember you, Uncertainty, my old friend. Thank you for always being there. Most of the time I’ve taken you for granted, but you are so important to me. I wouldn’t be the same without you. I’ve learned that you are synomous with change the only true certainty; the only constant we can come to know in this lifetime. You’ve taught me so much about letting go and choosing love. You remind me that we have no idea what will happen tomorrow. You’ve taught me to say yes. So, let’s go adventure into the unknown, my friend. No matter the turmoil you may cause, I know you are there to teach me to open up to life and chance and whatever opportunities the world may bring.
You will always have a place in my heart.
Cheers to you, Uncertainty! To many adventures to come, my friend.