We moved back to the farm in April of 2012 newly married with a very narrow vision of the future as far as careers. I was about to celebrate my one year anniversary with a company that I loved but I also knew that commuting an hour one direction was unrealistic in the long term. This became more evident as we found out that we were expecting our first child. There were no sizable towns on my drive so the first question became daycare and the second became do I find a new job?
I’m sure I’m not the only crazy hormonal pregnant lady who breaks down to their husband about these types of solvable problems. I started to search, but jobs in the field of agriculture are hard to find around our area unless you want to be an agronomist or sell seed. I wanted to do neither. I spread my search to banks and other financial institutions with little luck and held onto hope that something would open up with my current company.
Through many tearful conversations with my husband of trying to find daycare we decided that for now we would do what we could. My husband would head one direction to drop off our firstborn while I headed the other direction to work. Extra miles, but it was reality. Fast forward to December of 2012, I was 7 months pregnant and still lost. The uncertainty of it all and knowing how far I was going to have to drive was eating me up. Just as I was about to call it quits, God stepped in. A fellow coworker had the opportunity to take a position in her hometown cutting her commute time from thirty minutes to five. The good Lord helped me through the interview for that position selling and servicing crop insurance. I knew little about the insurance industry, but knew that the change was needed for our growing family. I would say this was a little divine intervention for both my coworker and me.
Looking back the jump from credit to insurance was a little daunting, but would I change it? No, absolutely not. I have been afforded so many neat opportunities while fueling my passion for education through customer outreach and activities like Ag in the Classroom. Know that just as one door is closing or you are not sure that there is hope you need to leave it out on the table. Some things are out of our control. Bless the good Lord that he knew what I didn’t.
When I started blogging I really wanted to share farm life with all of you and I soon realized that in order to share farm life I also needed to share my heart. If you have read some of my previous posts especially this one you know that my roots in agriculture run deep. This passion does not shut off, it does not get old, it only grows.
Attending conferences with other “aggies” only spurs that passion and creates a desire in my heart to share what I love even more. So today step back and think about what pushes you in your life, where does your true passion lie?
Mine is in educating others, specifically women about the wonderful field I get to be part of in my day job and when I get home. Agriculture is much more than farming, it is more than dairy cows, more than farrow to finish operations, more than a man dressed in overalls. The career possibilities are really endless, they can be on a farm or they can be in a high rise in the city. My intended career path was to provide credit to farmers. I wanted to be a banker for farmers. Little did I know God had a much greater and somewhat unexpected plan for me...
Does planting season change anyone else’s family dynamic? It is such an exciting time, but it is also difficult on our kids. A whole winter of Dad being home for suppers turns into meals on wheels or no sight of Dad except for the early mornings. We start to hold onto those short breakfasts together and look for extra snuggles where we can get them.
Our four year old daughter seems to have the hardest time transitioning, we ran into the same issue during harvest last fall. More issues at daycare with not using words to express our frustrations. This stresses me out but I also know that it is a time for me to slow down and spend extra time with the kids. I can let the dishes sit in the sink until they are in bed and if they ask for just one more book at bedtime I’ll do it.
Here are my tips and reminders to myself for surviving the widow season of planting:
The list could go on and I would love to hear your survival tips. Also a special shout-out to all parents who find themselves a one person parenting show as the other spouse is busy providing for their families. Farming isn’t the only sector that has widow seasons, so embrace it and provide a helping hand or a listening ear for others who face some of the same challenges.
I'm Lisa, a farm wife, mom and old lady at heart (or my husband tells me so). Agriculture, quilting, and baking were my first loves and now I get to enjoy them with my family!