They say confession is good for the soul. I’m a rookie farm wife, and I need to do some confessing:
1. The only “clutch” I have known is the type of small handbag sans straps I occasionally carry to parties. My tractor driving lessons have sought to introduce me to another “clutch,” in the same grouping as brake and accelerator, but the concept is still lost on me. Am I supposed to be stopping or going? I have no idea.
2. I try really hard to be flexible because I know that farming activities can change from moment to moment based on weather, equipment, or any number of variables. However, when called on to be flexible, my gut reaction is to be cranky because my heart’s desire is to know and stick to The Plan. At minimum I’d like to know the following: How long are we going to be there? Should I wear long underwear? Will there be snacks?
3. I buy jelly, jam, applesauce, and tomato sauce at the grocery store. The most effort I expend in the preparation of these items involves a rubber jar lid gripper and some unladylike grunting.
4. Husband, I do not understand how any one person can have so many relatives. Mind blown.
5. I have never pushed a mower, believing paying twenty bucks to a high school kid to be a fantastic alternative to doing it myself. But I will mow all day long on this fancy schmancy riding lawnmower, especially if these pale arms can soak up some sun.
6. Husband, when I go for a summertime harvest ride in the combine with you, I make sure all the AC vents are pointed your way because you’re working so hard!...but secretly I harbor a smidge of resentment because I am sweaty and fighting off a deep nap.
7. These trusty Tony Lama boots have seen country concerts, a rodeo, my wedding, and a few evenings of two-stepping but not one solitary day of work.
8. I sew buttons, and that is all I sew.
9. Picking green beans, tomatoes, and other vegetables is a test of my bug stamina. I put on my big girl pants when it comes to grasshoppers and even garden spiders, but when a huge bee swarms around my head, I do a quick, stealthy glance to make sure no one’s watching…and then I run away.
10. Sometimes I just need to take a selfie with a hay bale/chicken/giant zucchini, okay?
11. I wish cows were more like golden retrievers. Though their mammoth tongues like to lick, they just stare at me when I talk to them and don’t seem particularly interested in letting me pet them. It's rather disheartening.
12. Husband, I think that I deserve some kind of award for remembering the names of your 50 first cousins. My mastery leaves no room for you to ever falter regarding the identification of any of my three cousins. Don’t even get me started on your second cousins. I just can’t even.
13. Bringing a Vera Bradley thermos of cappuccino into the tractor in winter may seem like a luxury to the outside observer, but for me it is a necessity, a lifeline for warmth, alertness, and contentedness.
14. I mow over the spider webs in the grass near the house no fewer than three times because did you hear about that infestation in St. Louis? I’m still having nightmares.
15. I receive a great deal of amusement at the expense of the hogs by scaring them out of their peaceful state and watching them run around in a frenzy and then stop and stare at me, perfectly still until I scare them again, and they run around…
16. For patching jeans? Iron on, baby!
17. Fields of wheat, corn, soybeans, alfalfa—they all look the same to me! Milo schmilo! (Admittedly my Roadside Crop Identification 101 class with Farmer Husband has helped a great deal in this regard.)
18. The bread that I feed my family comes not from my own humble pan but rather an ostentatious plastic bag.
19. Husband, I find it rather unfair that at any moment you can put the combine in park and hop down to discreetly relieve yourself while I must wait till we’ve driven a full round and unloaded grain, walk to the road, and drive to the farmhouse, then repeat the process in reverse to return to my post, meaning your potty break takes 30 seconds and mine 30 minutes.
20. I’m a bit green when it comes to this farm wife thing, but this is a beautiful life, and I’m thankful that it’s mine.