Stronger Than We Know (guest post)

The following was so relevant to our current situation, I asked permission to share. Wisdom born of experience! – Ozarkmountainhiker

Rick Spicer0320

By Rick Spicer, Guest Author

A few words on taking control of your own mind. Each of us as individuals are the sum of our life experiences, and of the relationships we’ve built with those close to us.  For my part, I can only weigh in based on my own challenges and those certainly seem insignificant to me in light of our current issues which I evaluate not based on what our media tells me I should think, but rather what friends in other places around the world are living with as I write this.
IMG_4371rrAs I look back on my life, there are moments that stand out like a distant campfire in the darkness.  Each of those moments required me to make a choice and in that moment there is an opportunity to accept responsibility for my actions.  Having spent much of my life traveling to remote places, I’m reminded of my recent time in a swamp and the mantra that my brother @jasonleesurvival and I would repeat to each other.  “We just have to do today.”

As time went on and food supplies ran low, I felt lighter and heavier at the same time.  Lighter due to the twenty pounds I had lost, and heavier from the weight of uncertainty.   I learned that sometimes small changes in your efforts can lead to positive changes in your situation.

I hand-wove a fish trap from willow twigs and reeds and baited this trap with leftover alligator meat.  We moved the trap around for days but had no luck catching anything.  Eventually Jason killed a cottonmouth which we ate and then used the fresh entrails as bait in the trap.  I realized that it wasn’t a problem with my trap but rather what we were using for bait. I suppose the point here is that seemingly small decisions can have big consequences.  

We will look back on this moment in time and I believe it too will stand out.  What small decisions will we make in the coming days, weeks, months that will have larger than expected results?  I’m reluctant to offer advice, except to say go forward gently.  Be mindful of others and if you find yourself in the dark, know that even the smallest ember is capable of kindling a flame that can light the way.  We are all stronger than we know. Be well. 


Rick is a part owner of Pack Rat Outdoor Center in Fayetteville, Arkansas. He teaches bushcraft outdoor skills and applies those skills on his personal travels. Follow his adventures on Instagram @packratbushcraft