The other day, a friend told me that I’ve “married the forest” and “disappeared off the face of the earth.” Another friend snapchatted me a drawing of me in a forest saying “You’re always gone” with a sad face. Oops. How many of you can relate to that? If you’re reading this, odds are you’ve been there. You’d rather be among trees than with people. If you don’t know what this feels like… here’s some insight.
1. Cell phones and social media are exhausting
Most relationships these days are based on technologic communication and I just don’t have time for it. If you’re anything like me, you know the dread that overtakes you as you get cell service after being out for a week all too well. You know what it feels like to have to explain why you haven’t replied to phone calls, emails, texts, etc. You’ve kicked yourself for just leaving and not telling people you’ll be away from cell reception for a while. You know the feeling of wanting to chuck your phone off the mountain you just climbed and never go back.
2. You’re most yourself when you’re alone in nature
Something happens when you’re alone in nature- something incredible. You forget about everything you were worrying about, you take care of yourself, and you discover a profound relationship between you and the land. Once this happens, you find yourself craving alone time in the woods, in the mountains, anywhere away from civilization. I would much rather have this time to myself than have to small talk my way through a first date ANY DAY.
3. You’d rather wake up alone outdoors than to a person in a comfy bed
In my opinion, waking up is the best part of a camping/backpacking trip. Right now you’re probably thinking about the last time you woke up outdoors, with fresh air, silence, and morning sunlight enveloping you. That first deep breath you take after waking up is inevitably the best you’ll take all day. I think about that moment more than I think about waking up in a bed staring at a significant other, knowing that I’m not outside and the silence won’t last.
4. You daydream about your next trip rather than your next “date”
Instead of fantasizing about a person, you find yourself constantly dreaming about the sights you’ll see on your next adventure, the challenges you’ll face, the bliss you’ll find, and everything else that being outdoors gives you. You get more excited about sunsets, mountains, and wildlife than you do about going “out” or whatever social people do. With this being said, you probably spend more time looking at maps and trail reviews than you do looking at a special someone’s social media profile.
5. You’re never left out
One of the best parts about being outside is that you’re a part of whatever’s going on. You’re connected to the sky, the ground, the air, everything. That’s really all that we could want- to be a part of something. Eventually you realize that you ARE nature. In nature, not only are we included, but we’re just as connected to the wild animals and plants as the fresh air, sun, and water that give it all life.
6. Nature doesn’t ask for more
When you’re in the mountains, you realize how much personal growth and happiness the tall trees, wildlife, alpine lakes, and crisp air has to offer you. When you’re in the desert, you realize how much serenity and simplicity the rolling dunes, fluctuating temperatures, and limited shade give you. No matter where you are, nature has infinite opportunities and good vibes to offer, but asks for nothing in return but respect. Nature doesn’t take things personally or judge you for not showering for a week. This type of relationship is almost impossible to attain with another person, so I think I’ll stick with trees.
By Miranda Leconte
Miranda is a thisworldexists adventure ambassador who lives in California and works for the U.S. Forest Service.
Check out more of her amazing adventures on Instagram @mirandaleconte