Walking out into the cool crisp air this morning, I was suddenly transported forward through time to an early fall dawn. The dark, starry skies and the silence of my surroundings overwhelmed me and I felt a chill run down my spine. I could  feel it inching closer and closer, it’s now only three months away. I feel as if I can nearly taste it. Yes, my deer season opens exactly three months from today and what a glorious thought that is.

Three months from now I’ll step out on my porch to a very similar morning, maybe with less leaves on the trees, but certainly with more bounce in my step. I’ll take those first steps into the crunchy leaves, full of hope and promise, each pace taking more closer to the fulfillment of a lifelong dream. I’ll find my destination, albeit slowly and with several stumbles in the dark, but I’ll get there. Climbing up into my treestand, the piercing cold of the metal steps will numb my hands and each step will see me sucking air just a little more. But once I settle into my seat, all will be well.

The silence will set around me, nothing but the wind blowing through the branches, the occasional bird releases a chirp and my ears straining to make sense of it all. There won’t be much to see yet, nothing but a smiling moon and shadows playing tricks on my mind. I’ll close my eyes and breathe the fresh air deep into my lungs and as I breathe out, all of my worries, stresses and struggles are washed away. In this moment, the breeze brushing my face and the dry smell of autumn filling me, my soul will be truly refreshed.

I finally am where I belong. And now I wait.

And today is no different, as I turn back around off my porch and head back inside. Now I must wait, three more months of hope and anticipation, preparation and research, sleepless nights and antler filled dreams.

Three more months until I will finally be where I belong.