There’s a beautiful lake behind my house and although it’s a hell of a walk, it’s well worth it. I remember waking up at an unusually early time on a Saturday morning, my eyes still foggy as I put on my socks and shoes, my arms practically limp and tingly from sleeping on them. I managed to grab a granola bar from my pantry before I snuck out the house, making sure to gently shut the door not to wake my family. It was hours before the sun were to ever rise, so I took my time walking on the hidden trail. A few people often walk along the trail, but since I was the first of the day, spider webs stretched from tree to tree. The delicate but invisible webs hindered by mental stability due to my irrational fear of spiders. It took what felt like hours to finally reach the lake, and I was covered in spider webs, God only knows if there were actually spiders crawling on me. Through the trees I could see the sun rising in brilliant colors. I stepped out in clear sight of the sunrise. The sky lit up in shades of red, orange, and pink. Thin morning clouds hovered in the sky, they looked like the most comfortable pillows. The sun was rising further, shining its rays through the clouds, illuminating everything they touched, passing through the tree branches next to me. The trees on the opposite side of the lake reflected beautifully against the still water. The ground around me was boggy so I sat on a big tree trunk that was sitting height and gave me a perfect view of the sky. I swear the Earth was glowing golden from the sun. I sat there for hours, not being able to bring myself from that spot. By the time I was able to actually get up, the sun was midway in the sky and was shining right through the clear blue water. Off to the sides of where I was sitting, animals were basking in the beauty of the sun. I was in such a trance I didn’t even notice the alligator not less than 15 feet away from me. I didn’t dare move. I took mental note of its powerful legs and its long armored body covered with thick scales. I decided to completely disregard the animal, and luckily for me, it did the same. The sun was past the top of the sky, the alligator was gone, and I was starving. The granola bar did practically nothing, and I was so hungry I felt ravenous. I decided to walk a bit to find some fruit, if there was any. Suddenly, everything got ominously quiet. An immense gust of wind knocked into me and swirled the leaves on the ground. I looked up at the trees above me to see the leaves that housed me from the harsh sun. They hypnotized me, making me feel calm, though the longer I stared the more it seemed as though the leaves were eyes staring right back at me, and so I carried on. I found nothing. I had been outside all day and I was exhausted. It was dusk by the time I decided to go back home, but I first stopped by my original sitting spot where I viewed the sunrise. The air was cooling down and seemed to climb through the back of my shirt all the way down my spine, giving me the chills. It seemed as though everything was going to sleep, as though all life was coming to an end, it depressed me. The birds ceased to sing and animals hid in their homes. I knew I no longer belonged outside, so I reluctantly made my way back knowing exactly my parents reactions when I stepped foot in my house. It was undeniably dark, and although I should’ve been scared walking alone, and knowing that not even the shreds of moonlight could light my way, I felt at peace with everything. It was the first time I ever felt completely at peace. The thick trees became silhouettes, and soon the trail and my feet melted with the darkness, leaving me to guess where I was walking. Distracting myself from the fact that I was walking in the dark, I thought about my day. To actually enjoy nature through experience was absolutely incredible. Listening to birds sing and feeling the cool air hit my face. To take a deep breathe and inhale nothing but happiness and relaxation. I eventually made it back, explaining to my parents of my day, and if I’m not home they know where to find me.