Sunday, February 12, 2017

We Bought a Farm: To be normal

What does it mean to live a "normal" life?

During last week, I spent a night at my cousin's house near Nashville. Josh and his wife Sarah live in suburbia. They have two cars. And neighbors who leave for work in the morning instead of putting on their overalls and walking to the barn. There are grocery stores around the corner, and their church is not very far away. Their kids go to the local school. They were out late at their sporting events and are in the school band and have homework before bed.

I sat in a lot of traffic. I saw a lot of people. I had my pick of take-out I wanted to eat that night.

This life they are living feels like normal to me. It's what I grew up doing. Living in a house in a neighborhood and eating out and going to school and all that goes with it.

And so, because it is different than what I am used to, my life doesn't feel ... normal.

Today I helped our WWOOFer Jacob move pigs. Twice my feet got royally stuck in the mud, and I almost lost my boot pulling them out. I'm currently worried about one of our female pigs whose birthing went badly last week, and she is just totally not looking like herself. (I'm really worried we may lose her.) I spent some time this afternoon petting the sheep and reinforcing a fence for our new Mangalica pigs. Oh and I delivered two dozen eggs at church this morning. And shoot I gotta figure out what we are doing for homeschool this next week.

In honor of keeping it real, I'll tell you that I struggle with this "dilemma" that keeps popping around in my head. (Although it isn't actually a dilemma because we have no plan to sell the farm and move to suburbia ... ever.) (Honestly what that would do to my husband wouldn't even be worth considering.)

But what is this life I've chosen? It still feels so foreign to me. I feel like such a fraud. I truly don't know what I'm doing, and keep thinking: maybe suburbia wouldn't feel so strange.

But today my kids put on their very first show for me in the driveway on their bikes. (Their cousin Charleigh has lead some shows, but they've never done it without someone else's guidance.) They did tricks, and while the big kids were pedaling with one foot or riding with no hands, Hannah's tricks always involved funny facial expressions. We sat around and watched Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, and now we are making dinner. Okay, so the dinner is meat that was previously in our pasture, but does that really matter?

In the end, aren't we all doing the same things? We are working and taking vacations and watching our children grow and wishing they wouldn't grow up so fast and just living life the best we know how.

And whether that involves mud or next-door-neighbors, we are all in this game called life together.

And who knows what normal is anyhow?

I try to remember this.

I know it's true.

And so I keep wondering: is this really my life!?

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