Too much time is spent in our society doing things that bring us nothing more than despair, loathing, hatred, fear, and boredom. We are a culture of dead-end jobs, abusive relationships, and self-pity. It’s enough to make you seek seclusion and relief elsewhere. And many of us do. We, the wannabe farmers and homesteaders of the world, find our Nirvana in the garden. Our Summerland is with our animal friends. Our Heaven is within the soil.
Our pure bliss can be found outside with nature so why not utilize that love for the divine incarnate to make ourselves happy? Let’s find that perfection. Grow something that you love! It seems easy enough, and yet I see so many people struggling with it.
Stop trying to grow veggies and raise animals that don’t make you happy. Just because Angora rabbits have become my ideal livestock, doesn’t mean that they will give you cause to rejoice. It doesn’t just come down to whether you are physically capable of raising or growing a certain animal or crop; it is more about your choices behind raising or growing that animal or crop. Sure, finding a niche in the market is important to make sales. I’ll give ya that one. But is that niche product going to bring happiness and joy and love to your daily life?
Be greedy. Think of yourself and your own merriment. Do alpacas just steal your heart? Are they calm and forgiving when you are near them? Do they bring peace to your soul? If they do not, then why would you put yourself through the heartache and tribulations of raising a whole herd simply to raise a fiber in demand? To me, such a thing is not a trade-off worth my time and is certainly not worth the pleasure and contentment of my family. We live to raise “keepers” around here.
In the past few years, we have learned that broccoli, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts are not worth our time and energy. We spent two long winters and two short spring seasons coming to the realization that some Brassicas lead to wasted hours of fretting, wishing, and squandered resources that could have been used to help other aspects of our farm flourish. Why? Because a neighbor had good luck with these specific crops. We thought that we should be successful with them too! Why should that be the case? We are all different people. We are all different farmers. We all have different tolerances and methods. In fact, there’s no way we can be the same kind of successful with the same crops and animals. Why should we be?
As humans, as Americans, as farmers; we need to acknowledge that we each have our own unique password to joviality in this world. Happiness is painted on my face by raising French Angora rabbits and growing pumpkins. I am no master at either, but they make me the most gleeful.
What are you growing that you love?