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Changes.  They are inevitable in life.  Some are small.  Some are big and take major adjustments.  And some, like the one I have been going through for the past six weeks just seem bigger than life, but are really just a matter of a temporary upheaval.  Thank Heavens it is all just about over.

A few months ago, my two bosses in Shreveport decided that they were going to cut back their expenses on the private practices they manage. Both have full time jobs elsewhere, and do the private practice on a part-time basis, which is why I have been able to work only one day a week in town, and the rest from home.  In the course of the initial discussion, it was decided that we would see how well it would work to have my office moved to my home, and only have to come to town one day a month.  Wow!  That sounded like a luxury I just couldn’t pass up.  So we began planning, giving notice to the other counselors who share our office, and cleaning out files and other things that have collected over the fifteen years we occupied that space.  Our goal date was April 1st. 

Over the past six weeks, I have lived in a whirlwind of activity – packing, tossing, phone calls, change of address paperwork, and dealing with all the tiny details that it takes to move an office.  On March 1st, I notified the phone company of our impending move, and was assured that there would be no problem, and given a move date of March 22nd.  (Here it is April 14th, and I just got the fax situation straightened out).  On top of all that, I have juggled two other jobs, farm chores, storms and broken electric fences, and the Cattle B&B that my neighbor George didn’t know he was running.  Yes.  Twice now our cows have broken out and spent the night at George’s.  He’s a good sport about it though.  “Well, at least I don’t have to get out and mow my grass!”  (I did buy some Bermuda seed and offered to fix the divots.  George took the seed then shooed me and my bucket of dirt off.  I am SO blessed with good neighbors!!!)

We are finally moved.  My old routine has been churned up just like George’s grass.  I am no longer leaving the house at 3:30 am to head to Shreveport.  Lorea has been working one of my two days at the Pit.  I now find myself standing in my kitchen in a daze.  Where am I supposed to be?  What was on the list of things to do today?  WHERE IS THAT LIST????

Fortunately, living on a farm has a way of putting any new routine into place rapidly.  And I have Time.  I can now talk to and spoil my chickens again, rather than throwing their feed to them, splashing water in the bowls, grabbing eggs and running to the next chore.  I can do a more thorough job of checking fence, and actually taking the time to fix it immediately, instead of offering up prayers that the cows will stay in the pastures until I can get home to fix it.  I can wander out to the middle of the pasture and slip Scratcher a few Range Cubes, and give her a few minutes of undivided attention.  I can enjoy weeding my garden, try growing raspberries and do some deep cleaning in the house.  I can become active in the new farmers’ market Ayn is planning for Hall Summit.  And if the plums will ever hurry up and get ripe, I can work on figuring out a great Plum Chutney recipe

In other words I can breathe.  I can take a more leisurely and less stressed approach to my ordinary chores, instead of trying to cram them all into an already overloaded day.  I can take my time figuring out which day I need to do what.  I can clear my mind and get back to writing and posting at The Farm Wife.  No more helter-skelter- just quiet, calm and Done.  Do you know just how wonderful it feels to be able to breathe??

Whether we like it or not, changes are going to come storming into our lives.  The best approach is to just embrace them as part of life, look for the wonder, and stand steady when faced with the difficult.  Eventually, the changes will become part of the normal, and you will once again be able to breathe.  Now, if I can just get the raspberries to grow down here in the heat of the South, I just might have it made!

Julie Murphree is a blogger, newspaper columnist, and speaker on all things ‘Living a Simple Life on the Farm’. She is the author of \\\'The Farm Wife – Living a Simple Life on the Farm. She and her husband have 60 acres in NW Louisiana where they actively work on living as sustainable as possible.

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