Becoming a Wild Earth Parent

Published June 30th, 2015

becoming-parentToday I walked my oldest child out to Screech Owl Camp where she was ushered across a roaring creek and into the forest by ebullient and loving young adults.

Anticipating the coming goodbye, my eyes began to water as my daughter stepped into the stream, unfazed by the cold, unfazed by the widening gap between she and I. With glassy eyes I waved goodbye to my little girl, my heart overcome with joy and sadness, gratitude and grief.

I feel my heart stretching to accommodate the bigness of our world. The bigness of my daughter. The bigness of our camp, our instructors, our landscape. The bigness of the beauty of it all.

Walking out of the woods, I felt myself yearning to be needed. I wanted so badly for one of the instructors to stop me- to pull me into the world that was being created on the other side of the stream. And as I walked away from the Screech Owl village with a softened heart I stayed with the sadness. The sadness lingered and became tenderness.

At the end of the day, watching a tribe of our youngest children walking victoriously out of the forest– a rainbow of bathing suits, sunhats and backpacks– my eyes teared again. I recall so clearly when the instructors now leading these young ones were campers themselves.  Today, I entrusted my oldest child to the future leaders of our world who were entrusted to me when I was a young instructor.

I feel my heart stretching to accommodate the bigness of our world. The bigness of my daughter. The bigness of our camp, our instructors, our landscape. The bigness of the beauty of it all.


Simon AbramsonSimon AbramsonSimon Abramson, Deputy Director

As a child Simon spent countless hours exploring the forest, streams and wetlands of his neighborhood in NJ. Simon has a B.S. in Environmental Studies from the University of Vermont where he focused on the relationship between a healthy human psyche and a vibrant natural world. He has staffed and studied with various wilderness schools throughout the Northeast including the Institute for Natural Learning, White Pine Programs and the Vermont Wilderness School. When he’s not in the woods, Simon is designing and building websites and other internet solutions. More about Simon's work.

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