Do you ever wonder how you got where you are today? Or rather, if you are where you are supposed to be?
Is your life full?
I wondered, all the time! Now, I just wonder how I can continue to make this farm life even better than it is.
I was the classic horse obsessed teenage girl. You know, like Alec in the Black Stallion books and movie! I was THAT obsessed! (I also read all of the Black Stallion books and many other horse books.)
I ate, slept, and dreamt horses. Each and every day after school, well, every day that I could procure a ride, I was at the barn with my horse, Daisy. Daisy, was my anchor, my happiness and my whole world for many years.
Guess what this horse obsessed girl wanted to do when she grew up?
I thought I wanted to be a vet. I changed my mind after one semester as a veterinary technician student. I had little respect for the folks that ran the program and I returned home to attend University of Maryland Baltimore County – as an undeclared major.
I ended up settling on geography after taking a basic geography class (only intended to satisfy a basic course requirement) from the most interesting professor I had yet encountered. I was hooked and became a geography major. I also earned a certificate in cartography (map making).
After graduation I took a job as a cartographer. I loved that job for a good six years before I became the “trailing spouse” of a diplomat. The trailing spouse is the spouse who does not have a work assignment waiting for them at an overseas post. The trailing spouse often has difficulty finding employment overseas and lives a somewhat luxurious life (at least in the third world where a maid is cheap!). It was fun for a while, but Kevin’s job required frequent moves which were stressful. While overseas I was lucky enough to be employed at two of our posts. But, these jobs were not jobs that I loved. They were a pay check and a way to make time pass.
About halfway through our ten years overseas, I talked Kevin into purchasing a property. The idea was that it would be a place that we could come “home” to between posts, and a place to escape to from northern Virginia when the time came that we had to return there for work.
I yearned to buy an old house and restore it. We both wanted some acreage.
It took us more than six years to find the perfect place.
Meanwhile, I had been suffering from some severe digestive issues. Have I mentioned that I was a vegetarian for more than 20 years? I know, that’s hard to believe now! In 2012 I began eating meat again.
Kevin and I tried the Paleo diet shortly after I started eating meat again. I can honestly say that I have NEVER felt better than I did that summer on Paleo!
I started thinking more about what we were eating. I reflected on how I had become a vegetarian in high school after reading about the treatment of animals raised in confinement for the meat industry.
I began to research raising livestock in a humane way – this was the earliest planning for our future farm. I probably drove Kevin nuts quoting Joel Salatin and others as I mail ordered and devoured every book on farming I could find on Amazon.
We finally found the perfect property with the perfect house in spring of 2013! Spring of 2014 we moved out here temporarily and then in the fall of 2014 we made the move permanent and bought our first cows and pigs.
I’m finally where I believe that I am supposed to be after many years of wondering and wandering. I still doubt myself sometimes – I wonder what in the world I am doing!? I often fear that I cannot do this! It’s hard.
But. I don’t regret it. Not one bit!
Best of all, I LOVE being my own boss! Of course, everything that goes wrong (and lots does – you can’t even imagine) is MY fault. But I love even that, because I am completely responsible for it. I can learn from my mistakes and continue to improve the farm.
I think the only thing I would change is to have Kevin, my adoring husband, here with me every day on the farm.
Are you where you want to be in life?
What would you change?
The place you live?
If you’re not where you want to be in life, how can you start to get yourself there?
The photo at the top is the house after restoration. The below pics are before! I know – I still need to paint the front doors!!! But maybe I won’t as we are discussing replacing them with something that actually holds the cold at bay in the winter.