Sunday, October 30, 2005

Hunting

I've always disliked hunting. ALWAYS. I do know that it's important to many people and wildlife management... but I just don't see the joy in it. I guess my focus is on the end result which is a dead animal. I am not a vegetarian by any means but I do know that when I buy meat in the store... I don't have to think about how it got there and I don't want to. When Gary gets a deer... I am privy to SEEING how it got my plate and I don't want to eat it. How hypocritical can I get, right? My father always hunted and during deer season it wasn't uncommon to see a big ol' bloody dead carcass of a deer in the kitchen, right on the counter being sawed up, chopped up, ground up, wrapped and frozen. I hated everything about it. I hated the smell of it and I hated seeing it. That being said, why did I marry a man who adores hunting? Well, I guess to be honest... it wasn't one of the questions I asked him early on in the 'getting to know you' phase. "Um, excuse me... I know that I love you with all my heart, and I want to be the mother of your children someday... but I do need to know if you like to hunt. Because if you do, the deal could be off." I didn't ask him. Just like he didn't ask me if I like to cry at every sad thing to come down the pike... movies, Hallmark commercials, books, a great speech, even a beautiful picture can move me ... I'm bawling like a baby. It drives him nuts. If he had know he was going to be saddled with the world's most emotional woman.... he probably would've run screaming from the hills. Nutshell version: I guess if we had covered every single thing we dislike prior to getting married... it never would've happened.

That being said.... the day he bought a youth Cricket .22 for Hannah was a sad day for me. It was hard for me to see her so excited to have her own gun. Gary had spent alot of time with her practicing gun safety.... showing her how to hold the gun, carry the gun and take care of it. Time spent going over and over the rules of safe gun use, always practicing safety first. I do have to admit that he has done a great job so far with her and he is a very responsible gun owner. Finally the day came when he and her went out back and did some target practicing. She did ok and he couldn't have been prouder.

Yesterday was opening day of deer season for residents. Hannah is not old enough yet to hunt but she can go with her father to take a stand with him and enjoy the woods. I was sad to see her go and yes, I did cry. Who knows... maybe she won't like it. Maybe she'll love it. But I do think it's fair that Gary get to teach her about it without my one-sided hunting opinions interfering. She'll hear plenty of those as she gets older. At that point, if she's a staunch advocate of hunting she'll be able to defend her position on it with knowledge and experience.

5 comments:

lime said...

thanks for your honesty about the whole subject. kudos for being able to let gary and hannah explore this together so she can decide if she likes it or not. i'm sure it is a bit tough for you. VERY glad to hear he is a stickler for safety.

Melody said...

I was sad when Dustin headed off to hunt for the first time too...I, also, do not like thinking about where my 'dinner' came from. He loved it and hunted alot until he was 18ish...then he got a bit tired of walking miles and miles at the crack of dawn...now he only goes a couple times a season to make Lloyd happy I think. When my baby girl decided she wanted to HUNT too, I was devastated...the though of my baby shooting a gun..YIKES..made the hair stand up on the back of my neck. Well she is now 'cured' of the hunting bug, she got a Moose Permit when she was 11 and HAD to go hunting EVERY day with dear old DAD...she hated it and has not asked to go since. Girls should be home with their mommy's making cookies and crafting...yeah right!

Larry said...

Very well written. Yeah, I don't hunt, needless to say. But I try to be respectful of those people that do.

Cindy said...

I truly believe that those people that are taught to respect guns do not abuse them.

I love meat, but if I had to actually go hunt for my dinner, I would be a vegan. My in-laws hunt, but I just wave to them the night before - since they leave before the crack of dawn. And then I reap in the rewards when they get something.

Kerry said...

I'm in your boat too. I am very hypocritical though... I won't touch anything that DH brings home with him. If I see the animal dead, I couldn't possibly eat it. I want cellophane and styrophome, please. Alyssa talks about when she gets to go hunting with Papa. It breaks my heart, but I hold my tongue. I don't think she understands yet that it intails the death of an animal and that she would be responsible for that death.