Day 86 of 365
For most of the day today, I wasn’t even sure what the date is today. My life runs so differently than it used to. I have to know what day of the week it is all the time for grading deadlines at work, but other than that, my life is run by this completely different calendar–one that revolves around things like when the green beans are ready and what’s going to happen tomorrow with the chickens.
Today was kind of big, and I am, once again, weary. But my bones were healed today by three things.
First, I will share a little bit about our day on our little farm. It started at 5:00 AM because the first round of meat birds had to be processed because the roosters were more than ready. We have gone two years without keeping meat birds, as Ron and I agreed to eat almost no chicken. We eat very little meat overall anyway. But we have a teenage son, and he wants chicken. It turns out that a single organic chicken breast from a humanely raised chicken is about $10.00! So we got meat chickens this year. Not the white kind but the brown kind. That will make sense to any farmers reading this.
Anyway, it’s epic doing this processing, and Ron does almost all of it. He does it cleanly, quickly, respectfully, and, according to every single bit of research we can find, in the most humane way possible. I am the assistant. But, of course, it takes a toll on both of us. The days leading up to processing day are the worse. It’s when we argue, and we like never argue. Ron would say it’s because he’s so patient, but I am like 110 percent sure it’s because I’m so patient. I think the last argument we had was about two years ago–probably the last time it was processing day.
So I assisted Ron all day and then discovered that Juliet has ditched her babies! I cannot believe this. They are very little. I am not even sure what to do, but it’s a full-on ditch. I guess it’s too hot to be a mama. I get that. It’s too hot to be anything.
So it was long day around here, but I am extremely grateful for the food we now have to feed our family, which includes Boudica. As much as I lean vegetarian and will likely go vegetarian with our son is grown, Boudica is a very proud omnivore. She likes chicken too. The meat chickens are greatly appreciated. Greatly.
I am also grateful because I had a fantastic experience with little Beatrice, Kate’s baby who was ditched a couple of weeks ago. This baby has been terrified of me. She has been so terrified that when I change her food and water for her, she gets hysterical. This breaks my heart, but I have just been giving her her space and talking sweet and being patient.
Well, tonight, at bedtime, she didn’t go in her crate but was perched on top of it just crying and crying and crying. I approached her, and she didn’t freak out. I wondered if, just maybe, I might be able to touch her. I reached out, and I was able to pick her up! I pulled her into my chest, and she was a little worried but not too much. I started rubbing her little feet and talking so sweet to her–and she kind of leaned into me. It was amazing! I really, really like her.
The second wonderful thing was that we went to a cello and piano concert tonight at the library. I have been so weary and tired, but listening to the cello literally healed me. I have tried to research this a little bit because I feel the cello so powerfully. There has to be something about the range of its sound or something, but I swear it has a physical impact on my weary bones.
Finally, when we got home from the concert, right as we pulled into the driveway, our grown daughter pulled in behind us for a surprise visit. I haven’t seen here in two or three weeks, and it did my heart so much good to see her. I hugged her like five times. I swear, surprise visits from grown kiddos are the best!
It guess, overall, it’s really just this random day in my life in August in Maine on a farm as a mom. It’s interesting to write it all down here and have this record. Truly, it reminds me to be grateful.