Monday, June 24, 2013

the irony of the farm wife

I rarely touch on the irony that I am this girl living this life. When I was in 4th grade, we moved into a rental home, and my bedroom had farm wallpaper. Little smiling pigs, big red barns and picket fences adorned my walls that year. I was a very conscientious child,and I was so mortified by that farm scene staring back at me from my childhood walls that I did not have one friend over the entire school year.

My sweet grandpa was a school teacher and a farmer. We would go to their house as children, eat strawberries until we couldn't anymore, catch tadpoles in the large irrigation ditch and try to catch wild kittens loose in the cinderblock  pile.

Soon we moved from Spokane to the columbia basin. I refused to learn the names of crops growing besides the roads the we drove past, and I was very skeptical of this way of life, the stereotype of the uneducated farmer in overalls & a straw hat somehow still so ignorantly carved into my mind. My future was skyscrapers & the hustle and bustle of a large city, fancy dinners and a husband with a briefcase, suit & tie.

Fast forward to 19, the girl falling in love with the quick witted UW student with deep blue eyes and a refreshingly brash way of going about things. My  future husband who would come home to the family farm on weekends simply because he loved it, and that is what he wanted to to. Our first date we went to the laser light show and wished on a shooting star. My wish? Happily ever after, which I would wish on every shooting star, and his- a million dollars. A farmer and ambitious? Spending time with him and his  family quickly dissolved my thoughts and feelings on the topic. They are and were lovely and a constant example to me.

For the majority of our engagement I lived in Kiev, Ukraine. I was head teacher for a group of girls teaching english through ILP. Skyscrapers and smog, strong women in heels and fur, the silence on the subway and the brisk pace excited me. I may or may not have said aloud at my sisters graduation a few weeks back that if people were to walk this slow in Ukraine they would get stabbed. Probably not. Probably just accosted verbally (which happened a lot regardless of what I was doing it seemed). It enthralled me, and then it confined me. I couldn't see out.

for the credit of kiev, it is beautiful in the springtime

So I marry the farmer. We get pigs. We get geese. We raise a massive garden and keep chickens. We work hard. There is a deeper understanding of life watching things grow by your own hand and die if you are not careful. A sense of self efficacy at a job well done.  I am soothed by the simplicity of things, and by the smell of freshly tilled dirt in the garden. If I look out my window on a clear day I can see Mt. Rainier from here. I open the windows during summer nights and hear the crickets and frogs, in a little country symphony, and drift off to sleep surrounded by a living farm wall paper.

I can't wait to have family garden nights with our future babies and their mini garden tools.

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