Market Garden Update: Down And Out And Up Again

It is a sad year in that I had to forgo the farmers market. For so long before moving to our small farm, I dreamt of being a farmers market vendor. And then I was given the opportunity to try it out. The following year I did an entire spring, summer and fall market. I was hooked. I got to know people and I looked forward to seeing them again this year. But it didn’t happen. What’s the old saying, when it rains it pours? Let’s just say there’s been a flood in my personal life and something had to give. That something was the farmers market and I miss it everyday. Yes, I’ve been down. Down and almost out. (sigh)

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Since the decision to skip the market, I’ve had huge harvests that we can’t possibly use up and so all I can do is give it away. A basket here and there for family and the occasional trip to the food bank is routine. And since I don’t have a proper kitchen it’s too hard to can (without the help of my sister and use of her kitchen) or just storing it at the very least. I admit I see nothing but more gloom in the future. It’s been very hard to see anything else. I’ve been moping around, dragging my feet and upsetting everyone around me. What is it about us emotional type that immediately focuses in on the bad? One time, I walked into the room to sit down next to the hubby and he said, “Uh uh! No moping, not today. I’m feeling good so take your moody butt to the other side of the couch. I don’t want it to rub off!” Yep, it’s that bad.

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But my cloud of gloom and doom finally started to lift one day. You see, my unfortunate circumstances wasn’t the only thing to blame. I put two and two together and realized that part of the problem came from my surroundings. The state I live in is constantly dousing us with whatever is in those white lines in the sky. I noticed that I’d begin to feel *bad* afterwords. Not sick, like with the common cold but everything from sullen to overly irritable. Then I started wearing a mask whenever I saw the lines. I know it sounds crazy, but I do feel better for it. Also, I mustered up the courage to go back to the gym (and not wait until our house was remodeled to set up a home gym) in order to fight the (physical) woes. I honestly did not realize how much a body that feels good can lift the spirit.

Earlier I spoke of what I tend to focus on (the bad) because that was another realization for me. Oh golly how it plays a part in how you feel throughout the day. A friend put it in terms of force – positive attracts positive, negative attracts negative. Here’s a good example: I was driving down the highway just put-putting along with all the other drivers and along comes a crazy, weaving speedster. He’s tailgating and upsetting everyone. Before you know it we’re all speeding and driving like were mad! Yep, moods and actions are contagious. When a friendly face smiles at you you can’t help but smile back. If someone is rude, you want to give it right back them. It’s human nature.

So I decided to focus on the good things happening around here, and to forget about the should’ves and the could’ves. I have to say that it really helps a lot. Tammy had her piglets, the second coop for meat birds is just about finished, and we’re getting ready to start remodeling the kitchen. Truly good stuff.

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Finally, the third part of the equation is purely psychological. Technically speaking, I am farming the place by myself. The hubby builds, I manage. Fair enough, or so I used to think. Slowly but surely the hubby started coming out to the garden to help me plant, water and pull weeds. And in the evenings he’s more than happy to tend to the animals as I prep dinner. Now, I go into his shop to return the favor as I put on my pink goggles and gloves and get ready to assist in a build. It’s like we’re this force to be reckoned with, together we can do anything; separate we’re just going through the motions. Talk about a mood-lifter! He tells me he’s happy to do a market or two with me next year, and has drawn up plans for a new barn for a Jersey cow and calf. It’s like whispering sweet nothings into my ear.

So I’ve come to the conclusion that a year is much too long a time to be sad. I am standing a little taller, smiling wider and looking forward to the coming year. And I did it without therapy. 🙂 But really, there was only one way to go. Up again.