“social distancing…social distancing?...that sounds oddly familiar…”
It seems I’ve doing this for a long time. When my daughter heard that phrase the first time, she said she immediately thought of her childhood. And, apparently, not in a real good way.
While I’m still processing what I should think about that, I do understand that the isolation that goes along with country living is both a blessing and a curse. And, now with the whole world worried about COVID-19, many are attempting to adapt to practices that we’ve known for a long time.
I wasn’t going to post about the pandemic. Actually, I had taken a step back from writing about the farm since we weren’t participating in the Market anymore. Because who wants to read about a farm that isn’t really a farm anymore? But, then I realized that there is something calming and settling about the constancy of life here on the hill. And, if you’re anything like me…a little glimpse of normalcy in the midst of the never-ending cycle of uncertainty is a welcome change.
It is possible to forget that there is an unseen menace traumatizing the entire world as we go about our daily tasks. The sheep and chickens don’t know or care that we are worried. They do know, however, that they need to be fed and watered (and in the case of the sheep, allowed to graze that sweet, first grass of spring) If we don’t get to work on the preparations for the garden, there won’t be any fresh fruits and vegetables later in the season. So, we can always find something to do.
Signs of Spring are everywhere. The cycle of life as old as time continues on as if nothing has changed, even though it seems like everything has.
|buzzard flying overhead|
(see the cow on the hill?)
|sheep grazing the backyard|
|heading out to greener pastures|
|new life for the old hoophouse|
|a good use for old mineral tubs|
|cardinal in the backyard|
|pretty mama-sheep and her lamb|
|the first tulip|
Then there are the odd and random---unexplainable things...
|one of these things is not like the others|
one of these things doesn't belong...
(have NO idea how she got in there-it was a pain to get her out!)
|not to miss out on the fun|
OTIS shows off his dance moves
|Remy is finding the quarantine/isolation situation trying|
she has to take naps on my accu-pressure mat
|dog napping/yoga in the driveway|
|I have NO idea what she is doing|
But, to return to the whole idea of social distancing and isolation…
|the "old home-place"|
not much has changed
but, yet...everything has
It was just this time of year when we found our little piece of farmland high on the hill way back in 1997. You can read about that HERE (and, yes, that work-in-progress is STILL in progress, I truly hope that one day it will be finished…) We were looking for respite and healing. And, quite frankly, I was done with people. I wanted to curl up in a ball and avoid any sort of contact for fear of being hurt again. The fact that we were broke (SO broke) and had just one vehicle kept us from making the trip to town very often. It was 25 miles round-trip, so we tried to consolidate whenever possible. We spent nearly all our time and every single dime trying to create a new life and livelihood.
Needless to say, we didn’t go out often. It was years before we felt comfortable enough to “indulge” in fast-food. Ages before we could relax our restrictions on “frivolous” purchases. And, yes, my children were home-schooled. They were tense and trying times to say the least. (believe me, I get all the comments/laments about being with your family ALL the time)
So… social distancing? Isolation? That was our way of life. A matter of survival. I am sorry that my children didn’t find it particularly healing, but I did. (Honestly, they got a lot out of it, too---but, a story for another time) It has taken a long time, and I still have work to do, but there is a gift in the slowing down, the loneliness, and the forced introspection. Maybe society will benefit from this crisis in some way. Please don’t think I’m being “Pollyanna” or somehow dismissing the scale of this crisis. (I am NOT) But, the sacrifices we make today will somehow have a positive effect on the future.
Country living, building a farm, starting over seems like it would be an adventure, it would be really cool. Kind of like the American dream. So many people think it would be fun to try. The truth is: It is hard. It is really hard sometimes.
But, in her new book UNTAMED, Glennon Doyle says (numerous times) “We can do hard things!”
(if you haven’t already done so, find UNTAMED https://www.amazon.com/Untamed-Glennon-Doyle-Melton/dp/1984801252 and read it. READ it. You can thank me later)
So, I wanted to say, I get it. I totally understand how this current situation is so trying to so many people. It’s scary and overwhelming and everyone is caught up in it at the same time. Nobody has any real answers and there are people dismissing our concerns and the seriousness of the situation. The future looks uncertain and we have no idea if we are up to the tasks required of us. Any traumas or issues we have had in the past are going to be manifesting in some way and making this trying situation even more difficult. So, this is SO HARD.
I don’t have any advice to make it easier. (and, honestly, I’m struggling too) but, I keep reminding myself that we can do hard things. We have done hard things. (believe me, our life here on the hill has been no picnic) and with that in mind, I am certain that we will do even more hard things in the future.
So, hold onto your hope. Be kind. And, just keep doing those hard things. ('cause I know you can)
I truly hope you find a way to have a Happy Sunday!
Thank you for stopping by. Please come “visit” again soon!
If you need some coping strategies… Here are a few interesting things to read:
and, here’s a videohttps://www.facebook.com/461754380624264/videos/497644167595049/