What’s Next, Part 2

After people realize I have no clue what I am doing with my life, they inevitably start asking more pointed questions, the first one being “Do you want your own farm?” While I may not know what’s next, I do know the answer to that question: NO!

I love farming and want to be involved with agriculture in some shape or form for the rest of my life. But the thought of managing a farm on my own overwhelms me. I say this over and over: farming is exhausting – mentally, physically and emotionally. There’s no way I could go it alone.

First, I have no land. Land here on the east coast is expensive. I’d have to get a job so I could afford it, but then I wouldn’t have time to farm it. Land out west is cheaper, but if I’m going to stay in the States I want to stay close to my family.

Even if I did have land, I’d be just starting out and certainly wouldn’t have the capital to hire help. Animals don’t take vacations or holidays which means I’d never get a break. No vacations. No sick days. Nothing. Even if you have the best job in the world, doing it seven days a week without rest would drive even the most dedicated person crazy. That’s a sure recipe for burn out. It wouldn’t just be the farming side of things. I’d also have to sell and market whatever I was producing which means going to farmers’ markets or finding other venues. I enjoy that aspect of farming, but it’s a lot on top of everything else. All of that would be on me.

Then there’s the isolation. I’m an introvert and am quite content with my own company most of the time. But farming can be quite lonely. There have been days when I’ve been on my own and it can make you crazy. I talk to the animals normally, but on those days, it gets worse. My friends are already worried I’ll someday become one of those crazy cat pig ladies. A farm of my own would pretty much ensure that.

Farming is a wonderful way of life and I want to keep that life. Just not on my own. Perhaps my dad will retire and go in on a farm with me. Barring that, anyone interested in partnering in a farm venture? There would be bacon involved…

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