Thursday, March 17, 2011

A good day

I've been working in the barnyard for the last few hours: today's gorgeous spring-like weather demands it.

I started at the top of my mental to-do list and managed to check a few quick items off it: re-hang the barn eavestrough, measure for new gates into the back paddock, re-wrap the basswood tree to protect it from donkey chew attacks, dig out the seed trays from the potting shed.

I was alone, but not lonely. I worked slowly and with deliberate intention. Despite having an overwhelming list of tasks that need to be done, I kept my attention to the here and now, simply savouring the deliciousness of the moment. Birdsong filled the air, water drip-drip-dripped into puddles and the muddy earth smelled like promise. And manure.

I'd wrestled with a particularly frustrating morning "at the office," but as I moved through my chores I could feel that part of my world dissolve, easing the stress-filled burden from my neck and shoulders like I'd slipped out of a heavy winter coat. I kept filling my lungs with the breath of spring, and felt taller, stronger and fuller for it.

While I'm very, very fortunate to be able to work from home and make money to help support my family, my part-time job revolves around a world that I've tried to leave behind: one of business and finance. There's also always the sense of working for someone else -- another editor, a publisher -- or something else, namely a paycheque.

But this farming work is all for me and my family. While it's easy to drown in the workload, it's also my salvation. Maybe that's why finishing one job is making me hungry for another, whether I'm cleaning the barn, fixing a fence or marking out a future fruit tree. Or maybe I'm just high on all this spring air. All I know is every time I nurture this piece of Earth that we call home, I feel a shift; an opening towards possibility and the future.

That's a good day, indeed.


Erin said...

Good that you are able to enjoy everything, even knowing the to-do list is long. I have the same problem, trying to just enjoy what I'm doing at the moment instead of glancing at the border beds, or the pond that needs cleaning, etc - I will try this weekend!

Calling Ravens said...

It is such a wonderful feeling isn't it, and you put it just beautifully too.

Don't you feel for those, who in this lifetime will never even yearn for, let alone experience, that close connection with Earth and Nature.


Happy Spring Fiona!


Mama Pea said...

What a lovely post! So easy to know that you are very much present in the here and now. We gotta keep striving for that.

Fiona said...

Erin -- I'm usually looking at everything else and believe me, there is a lot of 'else' to look at right now, but today, I was able to just be here now. The kids are also with their grandparents today, so I can truly focus on where I'm at. Now I just need to focus on cultivating that all the time!

Happy Spring to you too, Meggs! And thanks for the kind words. Yes, I really do feel for those who are so distant from Nature. It's such a part of me and I draw such strength from it...

Thanks, Mama Pea -- keep striving, indeed. Practice, practice, practice, right?

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