The adventures of being a mom with a daughter who has a life of adventure.

I’m not sure who I was trying to fool by stating it would get better as my girls got older and lived on their own.  Don’t get me wrong, I love that they are each taking their next steps toward growing up, going out on their own, forging paths yet untrod in their lives. Yet, in there lies the scary part for mom.  How I find myself longing to drive someone to winter percussion, or pick them up from their zoo of a high school from time to time. But no, not today. Today my child found a new frontier of how to terrorize her mother.

Frontier, now there’s a good word for this new found torture. I am never sure whether I am to be excited or nervous when my baby girl calls from the wilds of Wyoming.  Today's call was filled with excitement that quickly led to terror, quite literally on the frontier. Today's call was all about the cute little otter that she was able to get pictures of that quickly vanished into the snowy abyss.

You know, I have always said there is a reason small woodland creatures disappear quickly.  And, unless there are numerous humans around making noise, you should be very aware of your surroundings. Especially when you are living at Yellowstone National Park in the winter. It wasn’t until she was talking to me that she became very aware of her surroundings.  In amongst our conversation about the otter, she stopped the conversation short and caught her breath. This was followed by a very quick mom, I got to go. 

I was saying my goodbyes so she could go back to work, and she quickly stopped me.  “No”, she said, “I need you to stay on the phone with me.  That wolf is a lot closer than I thought.”  I could hear her breathing getting quicker and quicker as she continued to talk to me.  She told me nobody knew she was going behind the lodge to take a picture of the otters, so if the wolf came after her I would be the one who needed to call for help.

That did it!  I think my heart skipped 5 beats and went straight to my throat.  Thinking quickly, I asked her if she had her bear spray with her. I simply loved the reply, “no, I just got off of work, so I didn’t have it with me.  I’m not sure it would help though, one can of bear spray would not do justice to the pack of wolves back here.” A pack of wolves; terror and beauty wrapped up in one package. Their song can be a beautiful melody that can lull you to sleep, or it could bring shrieks of terror that flow through the air and straight up your spine.  Truly, a force not to be reckoned with. Truly a force to be admired.

I listened as she spoke, hearing her take deeper and deeper breaths as she was climbing the hill through waist deep snow.  I know what she was doing, talking.  Talking would alert the wolves that she was indeed a human.  Talk would be cheap though if the pack had not fed in a while.  As I listened, there was one sound I didn’t want to hear, and that was the one lone song of the Alpha calling in her pack.

I had watched them, the Old Faithful pack, as they hunted down and devoured a small red dawg. It feels cruel to watch as a pack of wolves confuse a mother and calf like that.  On the other hand, there are many mouths to feed in the wilderness.  The hungry bellies of the wolf pack needed food.  And in this case, I would just as soon that food be a small bison instead of my 20 year old daughter.

How I wish the lessons of, “always take a buddy.” and “Don’t travel alone.” were heeded to ahead of time. But no, like most children growing into adulthood, these lessons are not learned until there is a narrow escape or it’s too late. To this mothers delighted heart, this lesson was a narrow escape.

As she made her way to the pavement and quickly crossed to the doors of the Inn, my daughter did let me know she was safe. I heard the door close behind her, she continued to chat while she undressed from her outdoor gear that is needed for the harsh cold of the winter mountain.  I did get pictures of the otter, which, to her, was the ultimate goal. I love that she gets to live and work in the wilderness, but I can’t wait until she learns the buddy system.


Submitted: August 06, 2021

© Copyright 2023 C. L. Adams. All rights reserved.

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moa rider

She sounds pretty switched on to me, and I'd say a quick learner. You can't put an old head on young shoulders, but with risk taking wisdom comes. Usianguke

Mon, August 9th, 2021 4:20am

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