muddy days

Now that it’s suddenly decided to get all cold and rainy again, I’m reminded what lies in waiting for the coming spring weekends…

MUD.

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That’s right, folks. Soggy, slurpy, boots-sinking-5-inches-deep, mucky, brown MUD.

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You see, whether we’ve had a beautiful snowfall or a straight week of downpours, everything always seems to get wet. And I mean everything.

Add that to the fact that, at a farm, you can’t just curl up inside all day when the weather gets nasty. If anything, you’re going to be working even harder before you’re able to pull up that Netflix documentary you’ve been saving for days like this.

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Whether it’s carrying a 50 lb bale of hay across an entire pasture so you can get it to a dry spot or just standing in the rain getting poured on while you try to flip over a feed bucket, you’re gonna be miserable for a few minutes – that’s a guarantee.

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The last rainy weekend we had, not only was I slipping and nearly wiping out every time I made the short trek to feed our goats in the morning, but my slick foot slid on the fence trying to crawl over it, digging a splinter into the palm of my hand and crashing my abdomen into the fence post. Fetching hay that same day, I stepped on a loose bale and fell to the ground, my head missing a steel trailer hitch by about 6 inches. (Okay, so maybe in that case I’m just really clumsy.) My cheap rain boots, fighting against the pull of the mush, were giving me shin splints. I could barely breathe as I attempted to lug that bale across the pasture. I felt out of shape and inadequate. And I was frustrated. Frustrated that all of this was so difficult for me. Frustrated that I was getting frustrated. It just felt like one thing after another. After another. After another.

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Oh! – And on a completely unrelated note, last night I emptied the goats’ metal water trough out for cleaning, accidentally brushing it up against the electric fence and sending an electric jolt through the entire right side of my body. I’ve never screamed like that before. So that was super fun.

But for once, through all of this, I’m not struggling with my mind or my job or my senseless direction…I’m simply at odds with nature.

Which is a nice refresh when you think about it.
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And you know what? All of this is continually making me stronger. It’s making me appreciate the sunshine and the 70 degree days to come so much more. Plus, I mean, how many people out there are doing what I do? I’m a city girl! I like white sneakers and designer handbags and expensive lattes! But here I am, proving to the world (or at least the three people witness to it) that I can do this. I can struggle. And I can fight.

I know I’m not really working as hard as the rest of the people on our farm. I get that. But I’m proud of myself for sticking to it. For sitting at a desk all day Monday-Friday and THEN working through parts of the weekend, too. It’s a challenge. It’s a personal milestone. And it’s unexpected – at the end of the day it truly makes my story that much more interesting. Plus, I can always use more cardio. It’s not exactly prime lunchtime walking weather out there, if you know what I mean.

But alas, this time around, I can also run away on a short trip to Asheville, NC – which is what we’re actually doing this weekend. Although we were looking forward to a warm, outdoorsy trip….it’s totally gonna be rainy there, too. Ah, but at least we’ll have pavement to walk on 🙂 Along with old friends, new sights and fresh wine.