It’s been a while.
In the wake of motherhood and the ease of Facebook and Instagram—where I do a much better job of documenting our life—this blog has taken a backseat. Well, let’s be honest. It’s way past the the backseat and is bumping along on the tailpipe of a cattle trailer by now.
For me, the ability to write is like a muscle. It needs movement, stimulation, exertion, but it can too easily become flaccid with disuse. The longer I wait, the harder it is to whip myself back in shape.
But as I sit in our kitchen, tea in hand, looking out onto a whispering sea of green corn stalks, it sure feels good to be writing.
I have to be honest, writing isn’t coming as easily to be as it used to. When life is full to the brim it can be difficult to find the words to start.
But it’s important. We are doing something of great consequence with our lives (and no, Dairy Man, I’m not just talking about adding cows to the herd) and I miss having the opportunity to share that consequence.
So, how have we been?
Well, let’s start with the reality that I have a 16 MONTH OLD. I’m not quite sure how that happened. Someone hand me a tissue.
The last time we talked, Anders had just learned to army crawl, was sporting two teeth, and had just started baby food.
Um, people, things have changed a lot since then.
Now he can walk (or run). He can climb. He has 10 teeth. His vocabulary and repertoire of animal sounds are growing every single day. He repeats everything we say. He loves flipping through dairy magazines. He eats just about everything, from blueberries and spinach soup to Pad Thai and shrimp paella. He’ll try anything with bacon but can’t seem to get down with tomatoes.
He loves walking through the barns and waving to his “moos.” He’s not at all afraid of cows. And did I mention he knows the difference between a “tuck” (truck) and a “tra-trac” (tractor)?
Dairy Man is so proud. We have a regular dairy boy in the making.
As you all know, there have been a few times (ok, a lot of times) where I have lamented my transplant to this country wilderness. It’s not easy to cope with the isolation, the long hours of farming, or the fact that the nearest Target is 45 minutes away. But I’m starting to take more joy in this life as I see it through the eyes of child.
I think we’re going to have a lot of fun here.
Anders is a blank slate. Everything is new to him, but he is becoming more fully aware of this unique place in which we live. He’s going to grow up amongst our bovine roommates and jaw-dropping sunsets. He’s going to build forts in the barn, take care of calves, and ride along with Daddy in the tractor.
As we prepare for The Season of Impending Doom …er… I mean “corn harvest,” this year, I can’t help but notice how different it feels.
Last year Anders was still a helpless babe. I was at my wits end trying to juggle work, a baby, and everything else in our lives while seeing only glimpses of Dairy Man for a number of weeks. Did we eat? Did the sheets get washed? I can’t even remember.
But now that Anders is older and our lives have settled into a more predictable rhythm, I actually look forward to introducing him to farm life.
This year we can visit Dairy Man in the fields. We can watch the corn chopper from our back deck. He might even get to ride in a tractor.
I think this will reawaken the novelty of our farm life.
Sometimes I feel like it’s hard to write about something I’ve become so used to. Farm life is still filled with oddities; I don’t quite fit in. But so many of the abnormalities have become mundane. I don’t even notice anymore.
No dinner till 8? Totally normal.
Husband’s clothes covered with caked-on manure? Just don’t sit on the couch.
Tractor parked in my driveway? Old hat.
Incessant mooing coming from the barn on the hill? Just another Tuesday.
Dinner conversation about bull semen? Pass the green beans.
At some point, unbeknownst to me, I morphed into a farm wife. It’s like turning into a werewolf at midnight but with less body hair and more corn kernels in the laundry. I still don’t bake pies, milk cows, or wear a gingham apron, but this crazy life has become my real life.
I still struggle with single-parenthood and frustration with the farming schedule, but I can tell we’re going to have a lot of fun with Anders on the farm. He’s going to be a farm boy before I know it.
I just hope I have a few more years before he comes home covered in manure.