Archery season began here in Virginia on Saturday, October 2nd. Mike, an avid outdoorsman, was so excited for the beginning of the season. While he hasn’t harvested a deer, yet, he has enjoyed the time in the woods.
With the commencement of the season comes a barrage of memes and jokes and cartoons about women being “hunting widows” and putting relationships on pause until January. While I get the attempt to make jokes, these things bother me. I want to support Mike’s hobbies just as he supports mine. For example, when I’ve joined the Time to Write groups during our relationship, he has been nothing but supportive. He doesn’t feel like a “writing widower,” but has cooked and served dinner on my writing group nights before then cleaning up the kitchen while I’m writing. I could go on and on about how he’s supported and encouraged my hobbies. So, why wouldn’t I do the same? Plus, I know that this time in the woods allows him to relax and recharge his batteries. While he loves to harvest a deer (and I love to eat the results of his hunting excursions), he appreciates the quiet, reflective time. He also still makes time for the two of us and I have never felt slighted, but know that I am still a priority. We spend time together in the evenings after the hunt and all year-round.
So, instead of trying to make Mike feel guilty about his time in the woods, I am proud to support him. I love to send him encouraging texts and leave notes in his hunting bag. I’m the first to give him a pep talk when the season’s not going well and I’m also the first to cheer when he is successful. And, when he heads out the door, bow in hand, I curl up in my favorite chair with a good book and enjoy my own relaxing time! Now, it’s time to enjoy a perfectly cooked piece of venison!