I still can't believe that is it 2018.
...it has been almost three years since my dad died and the same year we lost our sweet beloved pitbull, Baby...our hearts were broken on many levels. Also the same year I lost my little special needs goat, Milly. It came 'in threes' that year, as the saying goes..
We also inherited my dad's horse, Rose, and his elderly golden retriever, Eddie. Ohhhh what a gift - at a time when we swore we'd not get another dog anytime soon.... he forced us to heal in ways we needed, but did not know was possible, and ohh, how we adore this little guy.
It has been a wild ride the last few years and I have to take a moment to recognize the man that I share this farm with....Christian. He absolutely does not participate in social media, so you will likely never see him unless I sneak a photo of him here or you come out to the farm and visit, but he is my rock here.
He never, ever had dreams of living on a farm/ homestead - he is more of a city boy, but in 2015, he totally got thrown into taking care of it all by himself when I was gone for five months. He held it down, and everyone was happy and healthy when I returned. My sudden absence after my dad passed away didn't even offer any time to learn the ropes. He was literally thrown in - to sink or swim.... It may not sound like much, but trust me, it is a LOT of responsibility to keep everyone fed and watered, and at the time, Eli was an escape artist - who didn't like men (!!!), and Christian made friends with Eli, rounded him up when he got out, and all was perfect when I returned.....
That being said, the last few years had plenty of darkness, lots of hard times, and honestly it made me question a lot of what I believed, in all the good ways. I was shaken awake in my sleepy comfortable life, to realize what I have, who I have surrounded myself with, and the love that lingers and surrounds me at all times to hug me like the warmest security blanket.... It wasn't miraculous, or magical, but it was through trials and errors that I stood strong as I could. I tried and failed, I overcame fears that I didn't even know I had, and spent weeks and months adventuring on this land, playing with power tools, saws, and getting injured more than a few times (which Christian would get so upset with me <3 for being careless), learning more about Christian's heart - yes, even fell more in love after all these years (18 and counting).... I changed a lot, especially in this last year, and I think my heart grew more after being able to heal after such sudden changes in my life. I think it may be safe to say, I even grew into a better version of myself.... It is crazy how unavoidable hurt can force us to dig deeper, find our anchors & roots, and grow more resilient. It is quite beautiful in ways that is inexplicable.
This year, I start off with a very thankful heart. I am inspired. I am excited for a new beginning. I am excited to keep learning and digging and exploring - on the farm and with Christian. He has actually grown more interested in the farm in the last year in ways I didn't expect. It's been a fun year, watching him grow into this different version of what I have known in years past. We have both been enjoying each other more - if that makes any sense, through all this new learning and hunger to grow, and love this place. It was hard work to make this homestead what it is now - it was nothing like it is now, when we bought it. I think we are at a point where we can actually step back, walk around, and SEE the vision that I had... he struggled to see what I could, mostly because farmlife was not his dream... but every day I think it becomes a prettier picture.
I vow to dance more, laugh more, and have more child-like wonder about life this year. Why not? It can never hurt. 2017 ended perfectly and I am so happy about what 2018 has in store for us!
Happy Wednesday! I am excited to be posting more here as we embark on this new year of growing, harvesting (hopefully tons!), and learning!