I was just outside in my tiny backyard looking at the moon. And it brought back one of my favorite memories.
I know I’ve told this story before, but I love to tell it: I used to drive my pickup out to the middle of the pasture. And I’ve asked you to meet me there. Adam and I would sit in lawn chairs in the back and the horses would gather around and hang their heads over the side. I drank beer and Adam Dr. Pepper. If it was cold we drank hot coco and I added Rumple Mintz in mine. We would watch the stars and moon and listen to the coyotes. We always did this for meteor showers and there is one on my birthday every year. It was so peaceful and private.
I never had any coverings on my windows when I lived in the country. Only the moon or the horses could peek in and I didn’t mind that. I loved waking up at night to see the moonshine through the trees coming into my windows. Sometimes in the morning there would be a soft brown eye peering in asking me to get up and feed him some oats. God, I miss that life but I can’t go back there. I can’t go forward either, not really. Im in fracking purgatory and I don’t know where I belong, where I fit.
About Sharon Wilson
Sharon Wilson is considered a leading citizen expert on the impacts of shale oil and gas extraction. She is the go-to person whether it’s top EPA officials from D.C., national and international news networks, or residents facing the shock of eminent domain and the devastating environmental effects of natural gas development in their backyards.
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Cathy McMullen says
There is two thing the gas holes can never take from you, one is your great memories and the other is your self respect. It’s sad when people’s way of lives are changed forever by the greed of a few but never give up and never give in. Living your best life possible is the best revenge.
You will find your ” fit in” spot again. I know this is true because you deserve it. Plus, your too damn onnery to give up. It is one of the things I admire most about you.
Texas Widow says
This is heartbreaking to read, and I understand completely.
I miss my husband.
I’ll miss my home, and my wonderful neighbors.
I miss quiet evenings on the back patio, overlooking what was once a beautiful view.
I miss feeling healthy.
I miss peace.
I miss sleeping at night.
I miss entertaining at home, it’s no longer possible.
I miss life before this nightmare.
Hugs, Sharon. I admire you, too, for all you do to help others. Thank you for your hard work, your compassion, and standing up for what’s right … even when it’s been dangerous for you.
I believe in Karma.
I have survivors guilt too. When I go visit people in the fracking sacrifice zone, I always feel guilty when I leave to go home.
Texas Widow says
I meant to say, that helpless feeling is so awful. Please think of all you’ve brought to light, all you’ve accomplished. You didn’t let them beat you.
I know that doesn’t bring back your country home, that life you had. But hopefully you can find that again.
You’ve been taking on other’s pain for so long, and that’s emotional and exhausting. I hope to hug you in person one of these days.
Alberta Neighbor says
In my humble opinion, you don’t fit.
You don’t have the “every man for himself” mentality.
You put yourself at risk for the benefit of others.
You are a leader and you lead by example.
You are a gift to the world, and there is a growing number of us who stand beside you.
Let’s cherish our memories, while we forge ahead (with a rest in there now and then), so our kids and grandkids will have their own to cherish.
On behalf of my family, thank you for all that you do.
Admiration, respect and hugs from soggy, sour-gas-spewing Alberta.
Solidarity neighbor! And thank you for your work.
Another Alberta Neighbour says
Heart breaking post. It is to be expected to fall hard from time to time when helping others fight frac’ing. In my 30 years oil and gas industry work experience and 10 years living frac’d, i’ve never seen such dishonesty, abuse, bullying, corruption and cruelty from companies, deregulators and their captured lawyers and courts, as in the new high risk frac experiment.
Sharon, you give your heart to many. Falling comes with having and giving heart. Trust your heart. Falling shows you your heart. Old saying: “Fall down seven times, stand up eight”
Grab my hand, I will pull you out – however long it takes.
Andy Mechling says
Sharon; et al …
You might do what I did. Escape to Southern Oregon.
You will fit in fine. More than that; I think you would thrive.
Yes we dont have fracking. Yes its going to stay that way. Yes this is horse country
and yes we have night skies beyond compare. I tried to stand and fight the toxic cloud. In the end I turned and ran. I chose well, and Im staying here….clearly somehwere North of purgatory.
Was looking longingly at Southern Oregon today. But my work is here for now.
Sharon, I don’t even remember exactly when or where I found your blog and began to understand fracking. It’s been several years, at least. But we exchanged emails about your horse place, and as a horsewoman I connected with your love of that home and what a loss it was. You have left the gas patch, but you don’t have to let it take what led you to that place before anyone even knew what the Barnett Shale meant. My loving advice is get horses back into your life, and reconnect with what feeds you. You do so much for others, but we all have to put the oxygen masks on ourselves when the plane is unstable before we put it on others. (to borrow a sadly appropriate metaphor) If not horses, then something else that connects you to earth you are so passionately trying to preserve. You can do your work from wherever you need to. I am a Texan by birth, but I find that we are on better terms when I just visit. Your work will be even more vital from a place from which you feel sustained. You don’t have to go down with the ship while trying to save it.
I tried to find a small place where I could keep my horses. Even a couple of acres where there is no drilling is worth way more than 27 acres where there is. I couldn’t even make a downpayment.
My ship is not going down. I think my ship is becoming more streamline and mobile. I won’t say much else about it right now because my biggest readers are the gasholes.
Texas Widow says
I would love to leave Texas, my home state, far behind. Love it. But it’s not possible right now.
Oregon sounds like paradise … but I live with this overwhelming fear that I’ll relocate, and wake up to the sound of a gas company drilling behind me again. 🙁
Tim Ruggiero says
One has to have been through his to realize this emotion; Can’t stay and can’t leave; in between. Sure, you can stay and fight, but even if you ‘win’, there is no winning, you’re just not losing anymore. It will never be the same, there is no getting back what you had. That’s gone. For me, the pain wasn’t in the leaving, that was easy. The pain comes in passing through what once was; After being gone for a few days, I’d return home, and the horses would begin to run, knowing that a treat and a neck scratch was coming. The dogs would bark and howl and surround me, jumping for joy that I was home. A happy kid jumping on her trampoline. That was then. The last drive down the road, to pick up the very last of our things-those things that the movers didn’t take. It was like a ghost town. No horses, no dogs, no anything. Almost dead quiet-except for the dozing dragon in what used to be the back yard, and the calculated click from the drip tank. An empty house that used to be home. So we have a new home, and re-purposed life, an attempt to warn others, but few listen. Least not in these parts called Texas. Can’t stay, can’t leave, can’t go back. Like so many others, waiting in shale purgatory for that judgement day.
DO NOT waste much of your money and assets to obtain a residential homestead in Texas–eventually you will loose to the GasHoles or many other things, like pipelines, toll roads, etc., etc., etc. Live here on a tight budget if you have a job–then get out of Dodge when the job dries up!!!