Yesterday we ran out of feed so I borrowed a friend's truck and drove up to Stewart's Draft to get a really big load of feed for the chickens and the milk goats and milk cows. Seemed like everything made me cry. Songs on the radio, the voice of a friend, even picking up the feed and signing a check that said Philip and Ginger Hillery at the top made me cry.
Today I woke up and didn't feel like crying. I milked Coco. Strained her three gallons of milk and tackled skimming several gallons more to make a whole bunch of butter. Then made some chevre. Then some mozzarella. Watched the electricians work hard, getting the "bakery" up to code, running new wire, putting in new panel box.
I even felt like listening to some of my favorite music and that didn't make me feel like crying.
Then I went upstairs and started making phone calls, dealing with creditors and insurance people and hospital bills. That made me cry.
It was really hard doing all that paperwork, but I did feel like I had fought a huge battle and made it through to the other side, slightly wounded, but definitely alive.
Making cheese and butter and creating things in the kitchen makes me feel alive in a sweet way. Conquering bills and slashing debt makes me feel alive but in a hard and not very sweet way.
Sometimes it is hard to reconcile all the different parts of a personality that are necessary to accomplish real living. Especially vulnerable single mother on a farm living. I feel quite stretched.
A friend came in and saw the transformation in our breakfast/school room now turned bakery and was delighted and excited. Her joy made me so happy, but I was sad I couldn't be so excited myself due to exhaustion and grief. I wonder if I am afraid that if I get too excited about the good things that are happening with our business it might appear that I am not sad enough about Philip's death? Hmmmm.
Some other friends came over to help create a task list for a team of volunteers. Another friend brought me a book and a hug. Another picked up and dropped off kids for home school coop, held at another friend's home since we are in construction mode here. Another friend continued the work of packing up some stuff out in the milking parlor.
Is it only Tuesday? Seems like we have been working for weeks.
It is still very soggy from the flood yesterday morning. A cold front hit this afternoon and with it gusty breezes and very cloudy skies, but not so cloudy I couldn't catch a glimpse of the moon as I milked Ms. Coco. Unlike last week, this week's moon is growing and is tipped on its side, a sign of rain. It was directly overhead at 7:30 or 8 whatever time I milked. Speaking of milk, the cream is surely turning a marvelous yellow color. I noticed that the butter this morning was several shades darker than last week. So are the eggs.
Thank you all so much for your kind emails, cards, hand-written notes, gifts and kind comments. For your prayers and thoughts that keep us from being alone. It is a great comfort knowing you share our burden and care for us and we are grateful. Wish I could give you a big hug from the farm. And some homemade bread and butter. Thank you.