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I was looking through some folders on my computer and came across this memory. After we put my dad into a dementia care facility in 2011, my mom decided that maintaining their 23 acres was more than she could manage, and she put the house and land up for sale. While I hadn’t particularly loved living out in the GFW (God Forsaken Wilderness) because of the 25 minute drive to town, I had loved our back woods. As a kid, I dubbed them Terabithia, after the magical land in Katherine Patterson’s book Bridge To Terabithia, and it was the place I went when I needed to process events in my life. As I grew older and moved into high school and college, it continued to be a place of refuge, and I would take paper and pen out to the woods and write out my grief, my fear, my hope, and my joy, then I’d put the writing in glass bottles and bury the bottles under leaves near certain trees.

Knowing that they were still hidden out there, I decided to leave an explanation for the next owner. I don’t know if he ever found this or any of the old bottles, or what his reaction was, but this is what I left for him: