Monday, June 24, 2013

when you love someone...

I'm not married, I don't have kids, I don't have a ('real') job. People must think I have it easy. But I promise, the farm is a relationship like no other. I won't say it's worse than the rest...heck, I'm barely in the dating world these days, so I can barely compare it to anything.

In church last Sunday the preacher was talking about having something so small and innocent can just take everything from you. Energy, sleep, money, time, etc... with absolutely NO return of investment. Except for a return of pure love and joy.

My previous farm manager would constantly tell us she wasn't dating because she was married to the farm. There was no time for anything or anyone else. Alas, I can relate to both of these.

And last week, I'd do what any sane person in a consuming relationship would do...the farm and I took a break. How could I go even say hello to it when it was breaking my heart. I tended hours and hours of backbreaking weeding, yet it stuck its tongue out at me, mockingly, as the weeds overgrew once again. We found tomato leaves on a few plants: diseased. We yanked them. We stepped closer, our noses to the ground, where we found thrips...hundreds of them, frolicking in our dirt...hopping onto our plants. Infesting, tomato plant by tomato plant, they must be. And bed after bed in the field we looked, only to find that these pests were coating our entire field. Somehow most of the plants were surviving, but I still felt defeated. What can we possibly do to save our entire supply of tomatoes?

The markets are getting business, and we're selling more now that we're getting our name out there. Yet still, we need to double sales each week in order to just break even in the end! When I think of it that way, the weeds seem like a waste of time to pull, and the tomato disease seems even more devastating.

Thankfully with 4 partners involved, I was able to step back and find some silver lining again. Maybe we just needed space. I came back today after a huge rainstorm last night, and remembered how much I love this place. I was happy to weed through the jungle and find the hidden, yet strong growing basil. Happy to see that thrips were still happy and frolicking, but at least not spreading more tomato disease (that I can see). And happy to see new seedlings and new colors emerging now that I've been patient.

When you love something, set it free. So they say.

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