Alaska, My Love

Woah, y’all. Life has been crazy. I am talking “can you believe?” crazy! The kind of crazy that makes you want to dance and smile and be all kinds of happy. The thing I find most interesting about this happy dance time of mine is that I find it more difficult to write when I am feeling good. I believe it is similar to the idea that ‘therapy is only necessary when you aren’t feeling good’. It is supposed to fix the problems and there can’t possibly be problems when you are happy, right? *Momentary pause as I try to control my laughter* So, my life is the good kind of crazy right now, complete with all emotions coursing through my body, but joy is leading the way. This shift in emotional leaders all started when I got to leave the island.

I am sure you all would like to hear a little bit more about my trip to Anchorage because I really left y’all hanging. IT WAS MAGICAL. Anchorage is absolutely beautiful. It is the type of city that is surrounded by mountains and water and so. many. stars. Which reminds me, I had my first Northern Lights spotting. I would like to beg anyone to go see the Northern Lights and then try to argue with me about how life isn’t just a big magic show. THEY ARE LIGHTS THAT DANCE ACROSS THE SKY. Need I say more? On top of that, there is food that is to die for, hiking that is out of this world, a mall with an ice skating rink and a bowling alley… and my favorite part, Target. Yes, I am basic and yes, I did go to Target twice in the five days I was there. Not sorry.

As always on my trips I got to meet some wonderful people. That is always my favorite part of traveling. I am revived by the stories l hear from the people I will probably never see again and they still manage leave this impression on me that lasts forever. In case you forgot from my previous post, I was in Anchorage for a work training. It really sets the tone for meeting a lot of people doing some pretty bad-ass work in Alaska. I met a woman from Wisconsin *represent* who vacationed in Alaska and her vacations would get longer and longer until she just decided to stay. Since moving here she has been dedicated to building strong families across Alaska. We also talked about the Packers making it to the Super Bowl this year and her desire to never birth her own children. She was fantastic. I also met a woman from the FBI who works on fighting sex-trafficking and we talked about what self-care looks like for her in her line of work. In case you are wondering, it involves a lot of talking. There was also our fantastic bartender at the hotel who whipped out a knife to demonstrate that ‘Lucy can take care of herself!’ Oh, and the ice cream shop owners that were both packing heat as we ate our ice cream. Plus, out of all these great people, I also got to know my coworkers better! Couldn’t have asked for a better trip.

However, the most interesting aspect of leaving was missing my small town of Craig. If you go and read some of my previous posts, never did I ever think I would say those words. I really did though. I missed not having so many options. I oddly enjoy knowing I have basically one store to get my groceries. I also enjoy not having a Dave and Busters because that really messed with my head. I will never re-enter that hell pit again. I missed no traffic. I missed the air in Craig. Anchorage is exceptionally dry. (That tundra life tho.) I missed my friends and my job and my views and my car. It has been a little less than 5 months since I have moved here and I finally feel like I am starting to put down some roots and this odd little island is starting to feel more and more like home.

The thing I truly love about Prince of Wales Island, is the rich history that seeps into the way of life here. I spent yesterday out in Kasaan which is the Tlingit word translating to beautiful town. Kasaan 100% lives up to it’s name. It was flush with deep green trees and water that extended out to kiss the base of mountains. I have a jacket pocket filled deep with seashells and stones. I helped harvest devils club which could potentially be one of my cool, new hobbies? Though jam making is still a top contender. I felt extremely calm as I peeled the bright green root from the branch which helped make devils club tea. In that moment I understood why people come to vacation here and sometimes never leave. This island can transport you to a different time. I got chills as I sat in the Chief Son-i-Hat Whale House after just listening to the history and recent restoration of the ‘house with no nails’. MAGIC. I learned so much yesterday that I feel like I could write a whole book. As a person that loves school it was my favorite thing to be able to sit quietly and inhale all the knowledge that people on this island not only know, but live and breath by.

As is evident by my previous blog posts, I have bad days… sometimes bad weeks. Heck, high school was like four bad years. Yet, the more I am here the less I find myself trapped in that negative space. As I referenced in the beginning I feel happy and it is not because I don’t feel those other emotions, but because those other emotions pale in comparison to a clear sky in Alaska. I talk to families day in and day out about trauma and when I come home I take just a moment to look up. It makes the pain and heartache feel manageable. Witnessing nature is the best medicine I have found thus far and Alaska is abundant in it. Alaska, slowly, but surely, I am falling for you.

*Featured image was taken yesterday from the Kasaan beach. For more pictures from my Alaskan adventures follow me on Instagram: sarahlorrainerobinson *

Author:

I like short walks on the beach & feminism.

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