It's almost 9 and we haven't had dinner yet. We do this often, work till after dark, then stumble in to the kitchen, dirty and tired and so very hungry. To get everything done that we feel we need to to get the farm up and running, these long days are necessary, especially since I still have my "real" job full-time, so farm work has to come after those 8 hours are done. We don't mind, we enjoy each other and the work at hand so much that it is not drudgery at all, but there are times when I remember what it was like before the farm...evenings on the couch knitting maybe, watching a nice series on the tube, or going to the movies with friends..... We will get there again someday, when things are more established and our list is a few items shorter.
Meanwhile, it is important for us (and everyone), to take care of ourselves. This means long hot soaks in the bath are a requirement, not a luxury, to take away the aches and pains of the day's worth of bending and lifting and digging. It means drinking a glass of red wine with our late dinner, and being kind to ourselves about the piles of laundry and dusty surfaces inside the house - it just can't get all done, as our focus is getting the farm going, some things are going to fall down on that list, like dusting.
For me today, it meant taking a few minutes to run and grab some pruners, and make myself a bouquet for the bedroom of the gorgeous lilac that is blooming. We moved on to the farm in July, and the lilac bush was just this leafy shrub that we were told would be glorious in the spring. We watched it lose all its leaves, and then sit as a bit of an eyesore of twigs between us and our lovely barn for so many months. Finally, a few dark purple tiny buds appeared, and then grew in number and then started lightening and lightening, until just a few days ago, Wow! The smell and the color are worth the wait. I almost felt guilty cutting the bouquet... is this really ok to take? Am I depriving the pollinators of nectar? Should I be giving these to someone else? Could we sell this? Then I took a breath and told myself it was mine, and I could take some and enjoy it and it was a good thing to do.
It was my birthday this week, and I posted some photos on Instagram of my new ritual, My Morning Walk. A friend commented, something about honoring myself, and it inspired this blog. We aren't being selfish or lazy or greedy when we take a little time for ourselves...something many of us need to hear.
Writing this blog to you, dear readers, is another thing I am trying to do more regularly for myself (and hopefully you too) as well. During my years as a single mom, I longed for a quiet 30 minutes to write, but never felt like I had it. I would always think about what I heard about Alice Walker, and how she wrote The Color Purple while a single mom who worked full-time and I would feel bad that I wasn't capable of being that dedicated. So now, yes the farm and other work are demanding, but I am claiming this little moment each week to do this.
Take some time for yourself.