Saturday, July 13, 2013

Stronger..but Changed

"You really don't know how strong you are until being strong is your only option".  I received this comment from reader, Sarah Schwall ( a big thank  you)  and it is one that will forever resonate in my heart and soul.  It says it perfectly and that is my new answer that I give to people when we talk about last year's events.....   

And so today’s  blog post will not  be about farming, it is more about the personal life of a former "farmerette", now a farm-ground landlord but still an Agra-Diva, ME!  Since I started sharing more about me, my family, and a very candid behind the scenes look at how one farm family has been coping with multiple tragedies, my readership has increased as I think people can relate to life not always turning out the way you thought it would. Those of us who blog and  open our lives to others are willing to  share our life’s story about what is going on in an  up close and personal view, sort of like going to a movie and watching someone elses life story on the big screen.  My main purpose is to show that those of us in the Ag industry have lives outside of growing  America's food and sometimes the "good life" can come with the not-so-good parts.  There are the unpredictables, for instance with farming  the crops have weather & market prices as the wild card....  our personal lives have people & events that can create chaos that will forever change the course of your life.  AND more importantly.... it is how you choose to navigate through those rough waters. 
As I write this tomorrow, Sunday, July 14 would have been my daughter, Kaitlyn's 1st wedding anniversary with Andrew, her now deceased husband.  And she will be spending it with me.... her mom.  It  is not the way  we both had imagined a first year wedding anniversary would be spent. ( I linked those "life turning blog posts" about me & Kaitlyn for new fellow readers. ) As I was doing it, I came across other blogs I had written on July 14 from 2010 and 2011 and reflected how different my life (as well as Kaitlyn's) was back then.   And so I will be there for her and we will get through this hard day, which I am guessing will have tears, hugs,  perhaps some laughing at some goofy memory, probably more tears and red wine,  pasta & chocolate.  Comfort food & each other as  Kaitlyn and I are each others "safe person" and together it will just be one more challenge to overcome.   Plus we  both know we have a couple more hard days coming up this Fall with the anniversary of when both of the men in our lives left us.    But we are strong... We both have been to HELL & back and  we are here  to tell you that Life is best lived in a positive & good way and that the power to create that is within each of us.....
A girl's night out...
 Just the other day, Kaitlyn and I were chatting about how we had emerged stronger but changed.  The challenges we have faced have made us different people than we once were and while some days we didn't know if we would ever feel whole again, we had hope that the sun would shine again in our lives.  We also found out how kind people are and those simple sweet acts of giving had the power to completely help heal a wounded soul and heart. I appreciate those small everyday miracles all around us and try to remember each day is a gift.  While it isn't easy and some days are harder than others, I value all the people who have come into my life, some have been a fixture in my life and will continue to be the  long-timers.... while others have briefly touched me in ways that will forever be special.     The love bestowed upon us  by family, friends, community & strangers were our "lifesavers"  and for that I am blessed.  I value the blessings, whether deserved or undeserved,  and will forever be grateful to all of you.

 A new friend in my life sent me this quote of which I want to share with you...Good words to live by.

"Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could; some blunders and absurdities have crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; you shall begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense." -- Ralph Waldo Emerson

As always, thank you for stopping by and feel free to leave a comment or email me at   Also don't forget to post or email me your "care labels" for a chance to win one of those great shirts from Duluth Trading Company!  ( From last week's blog.... so make sure and check it out!  Plus a few labels that have already have come in are great... made me envious of why didn't I think of that!) So keep 'em coming. And I'll post the ones I've received so far.

A special thanks to my  family, Mom, Jen & Soren & their 3 angels, Barry & Denise (who gave me an "unhitched party"), Rivers & Edie, my crazy Montana crew, Lisa & farmer Jay & Zack.  Then the unconditional support from the "Co-op Queens"( Jacie, Heather, Lezah & Vickie), Gwenn & Dave, Pete & Karen, Kristi & Kris, Dorene, Kara and the wild women's wine group !