I started thinking about my departure from Missoula a long time ago. I remember being on the phone with my mom and telling her that it upset me that this moment in my life would never be the same again. Missoula will always be here. I can visit, come for a vacation, maybe even move there someday. But, the people I met this summer won't all be there. Not all of them. And when I see everyone again someday, it will be in spurts, and our lives will all be so different. We won't ever have that deer in the headlights looks in our eyes where we were scared and didn't know anything. It will be exciting still, for other reasons... but those pure moments that were this summer, they are a beautiful memory to be saved in time just as they were left. They are perfect blissful moments, just as they are. And I will cherish those moments, and all of you who blessed them dearly, forever.

In reply to my comment, my mom replied, "Yeah, but Hailey, it's just like a sunset. No sunset is ever, ever the same... but it's always beautiful."

Thanks, Missoula, for all the amazing sunsets.


  1. Hailey: You're writing is just as beautiful as your photography.

  2. hailey, i wish i knew your mom. what great wisdom...