A few months ago, I came across an Instagram influencer named ‘Pattie Gonia’ (yes that’s a play on both the geographic location and the famous outdoors company). She calls herself ‘your backcountry queen’. An environmental advocate and drag queen. Fantastic, if you ask me.
Anyway, Pattie put out a call to all of her followers to send a hand-written letter to her P.O. box, with the idea that the letter is written to mother nature, or “mother natch” as Pattie would say.
Thousands of people responded and Pattie made a pretty interesting video project with the letters. I never did write one and I’m not sure why. Then, the other day, this particular topic popped into my head and it inspired me to write a letter to mother natch myself. With these trying times upon us, I thought it might behoove me to share my letter with those of you who read my columns. So here, I present to you, my very own letter to mother nature for all of you to read. (Insert slightly embarrassed face here).
Dearest Mother Nature,
I promise to take always take care of you, just as you take care of me. I promise to always look out for you, to be grateful for you and to respect you. I promise to advocate for you, to share my stories about you, and to keep you in the front of my mind.
You give so much to us humans and we all need to make you a priority. I don’t know what I would do without you. You’ve always been there for me, through good times and bad. When I need a pick me up, I go for a walk in one of your forests. When I need exercise, I hike to the top of one of your mountains. When I need to reflect, I sit by one of your rivers or lakes. You always make things better and you never disappoint. You inspire me daily to be a better person and to challenge myself.
I live in rural British Columbia where I am surrounded by your rugged and natural beauty. There is not a day that goes by that I don’t appreciate you or spend time with you. On my way home from work I see the mountains, the trees, the river and the forest and I am in complete awe. I constantly have to pinch myself. Wait, I actually live here?
My favourite ways to bask in your glory are through camping, fly fishing, hiking and gardening. I try to make sure that you are respected during any of these activities. Leave no trace. Catch and release. No harsh chemicals or pesticides.
I constantly take photos of you to reflect back on because you are ever changing and growing and fascinating. I always tell people about your wondrous mountains and how they make me feel like a tiny, insignificant spec – in a good way. You are so powerful. You give us life. You are vast and incredible and it’s nearly impossible for me to describe. Being connected to something so much larger and greater than you can ever imagine.
So many creatures and critters rely on you. After all, none of us would be here if it wasn’t for you. I marvel at your many different ecosystems, climates, and habitats. From the bugs in my garden to the tropical rainforest, we are all connected one way or another through you.
Thank you for all of these experiences and thank you for your nourishment. I promise to continue to utilize all of the amazing benefits that you provide. You are such a massive part of my life in so many ways. Thank you for making every day magical, memorable and worth living.