The Measure of Thankfulness

"What am I thankful for?"

It’s a question that we all tend to ask ourselves during the Holiday season. We all have things that we are thankful for, and they are all invariably different to each of us. I’ve been hunting and fishing for 37 years, give or take. I can remember hunting with my father as a child, how thankful I was that he would bring me on a hunt and teach me about nature. I remember how cold I was, but he would hug me until I warmed. That was a long time ago, but those hunts seem like they happened yesterday.

When I was a teenager and twenty-something, I had an insatiable desire to hunt deer and to kill the biggest buck. In my thirties I was driven to hunt, but i enjoyed the smell of the woods and the details of each hunt a little more. My priorities began to change, as did I.

I still love to hunt and relish every chance to be in the woods. But what I am most thankful for now is the time that I spend with my family and friends. Nothing compares to watching my son take his first buck, my nephew swinging on a cupped drake, or my other son rolling a thundering tom turkey. These are moments in time that are worth more to me than any trophy buck on my wall. And it’s the time I spend with them that they will remember the most.

I’ve realized that life is a journey, and a short one at that. In a hundred years from now, it’s not going to matter that I killed a giant buck in 2012.  But the time I spend with my kids will live on for generations.

LIfe is short, friends. Spend it with people you care about, and you’ll be thankful you did.

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