Super Powers 

Invincible. The coolest super power to have would be invincibility. You could try all of these crazy things for the thrill and know you’d never get hurt.  Go skydiving, run marathons every weekend, cut up an onion without your eyes   welling up like a puddle during a heavy rain. (Am I the only one who fears cutting up onions?) Invincible super powers. Yeah…that would be the one I want.

It’s beyond me to think how big this world is and all of the things that are wrapped up in it. The good, the beautiful, the bad, the ugly. And even crazier to think the people living in it is what makes this world go round. Most folks are working hard to make a living and have a good life- some want fancy, some need simple and some don’t get the option to choose, but everyone is looking to live happy. No matter how that happiness is defined, it’s a simple fact of life. You want what you want, love who you love and at the end of the day if you’re lucky enough to have a family to come home to and warm place to lay your head at night, you’re right in the heart of happiness. 

Invincible. What if we could fulfill our wildest dreams because we knew nothing could stop us? What if your wildest dream is a farm at the end of the dirt road with your little brother. A farm made of a few acres and a couple cows to make a living and support your family? The only thing you’re asking in return is a meal at night and clean jeans at least once a week. (Sometimes for a good ol’ farmboy clean jeans can be optional.) Sounds like living on the edge doesn’t it?  But right in the middle of a dream…or maybe right at the start…something jolts you wide awake and you realize being invincible isn’t reality and you are facing something bigger than you could ever imagine. So you start the uphill battle to fight the world’s ugliest creation of all, cancer. Alongside your beautiful, loving wife and an 8 month baby boy who is in love with the same toy tractors you found a passion for 26 years before, you fight. 
Ever since I was a little girl, I understood the power of prayer. I knew from going to church and reading the Bible that there is no other plan in life but the one the good Lord has laid out for us. And so far He has really given me nothing to gripe about. Until about a month ago, I never doubted the path he would lead me down. But today, as I’m sitting here in my warm home with a cup of coffee on a rainy day, for the first time, I have doubt. I’m mad that there are not answers and I’m frustrated that I can’t make my husband’s heart feel better and I’m confused why there is no reason for all of it. Today is the first time I feel like I can’t say, “Everything is going to be just fine.”

Invincible. What would it be to not feel? To not have to feel pain or heartbreak? Would that be easier? Would that mean there would be no unanswered questions? No frustation. No anger.  I have no idea. Which would I prefer? And what  would I prefer for my loved ones? I’m just not sure. But even after all of these thoughts, I still pray. I still believe He has something planned and a part of me knows there has to be a miracle up there…right? Somewhere? 

Invincible. Maybe this whole time, I’ve been looking at this super power thing all wrong. Maybe we all have a little bit of invincibility inside of us. The ability to be too powerful to be defeated or overcome. Perhaps, that’s what our Faith is.  That’s the super power God has blessed us with. The tool inside of us to help us overcome the unthinkable and manage that through our devotion to prayer and believing. Yeah…that’s the super power I want. That’s the super power I hope you see in yourself. 


Working on Living 

I’m going to set a scene for you. You’re married. You’re 26 years old. You are over the moon about your job and this month you’re traveling to five different states. It’s going to be a crazy few weeks, but totally awesome because you’re doing what you love. Meanwhile, your husband is back home holding the fort down. Right now, he’s busier than a floral shop on Valentine’s Day with 120 calves destined to be on the ground before April 1. Does that sound familiar? Probably not. 

Let me start over and level with some of you a bit more. Your husband farms and his life is at home with the crops, the livestock and the constant maintenance of a farm. If it’s not Christmas, getting out of town for longer than 24 hours at a time is near impossible. You’re the wife who works full time in a job that gives a handful of opportunities to grow. What’s more, travel is involved and you get to see the world with a company that takes good care of you on the road. Starting to sound a little more familiar? 

When we got married, there were all of these glamorous thoughts that came to mind. Things like, “I am going cook supper in this cute apron that I got from Grandma because my Parmesan pork chops will taste way better if I look cute while I make them.” Or…”The house is always going to smell like cinnamon spice because I want all of my couple friends to enjoy nice evenings at mine and Kirn’s home with wine after a long week of working.” At one point I even thought pies were a normal thing to bake at least once a week. 

…pausing for a moment so you can take all of this in. 

Did you get your “throw your head back laughing” out of the way? After a year and some change of marriage, it’s crazy how different things are from what I thought they would be and we are still pretty fresh off the farm. There are probably many of you reading this that may have more to say than I would even know to talk about.
While I’m not a mom yet, I am a wife (Good start, Ashlee) and being just that can be a challenge when you have a career that you want to be so dedicated to. Meaning, sometimes work-life balance may not exist or maybe it simply never exists. This past week, I was in Orlando for a trade show. It was an amazing week with a ton of high points. But back home, I had a sleep deprived husband who had tended to 18 calves in a two day span. You can imagine between our crazy agendas, we had a few miscommunications. Furthermore, when you are 900 miles apart those miscommunications become rather magnified and to top that off, if you know me at all, I am much too stubborn to admit it was my fault. I’m here to tell you- this never works, ladies. Learn to go full Elsa on your attitude and “Let it Go.”

I had a friend tell me not too long ago, there is no such thing as work- life balance; it’s all about intermingling the two. I always knew that when I married Kirn, 90% of my dates would be a few beers in the barn on any given day talking about dreams of what someday will bring us and I was good with that. I had accepted my intermingling roles as the farm wife. But never in a million years could anyone have told us that the real challenge would be finding ways to involve Kirn into my world and career as well. “It’s all about give and take.” Wouldn’t you like a dollar for every time you’ve heard that? 

Finding ways to involve your significant other into a corporate world, can be difficult and at times probably feel like they don’t care much to hear about it. The stories have to be that much longer to explain why it took you all day to do one thing. (Try telling a farmer that it was a busy day of answering emails and I guarantee you lose their eyes in the back of their head). When you’re traveling, it seems like all of this wining and dining is just a lot of fun, but if only you could explain to them it’s also the prime time to network. Especially, when Kirn’s networking is a few cups of coffee at the co-op or lunch time at the local diner in town. The saving grace for life on the road…Technology. I am blessed to work with some really great folks and I watch moms/ dads close that gap with their spouses and kids each day they are gone, by a quick FaceTime every chance they get. Since Kirn is stuck is the Samsung life, texting to send an update and making calls before you start and end your day will have to do. 

I think the biggest take away here is to always share your day’s highs and lows with your honey buns. Give them the benefit of the doubt that they can at least understand the reasons you may feel overwhelmed, stressed, excited, anxious… whatever it is. That’s what a marriage is about, COMMUNICATION. Growing with one another as life gets busy…sometimes messy. It has nothing to do with Parmesan pork chops, cute aprons or cinnamon candles. What is going to get you from one good pie to the next are the moments shared in the living room talking about the crazy cow that almost broke Kirn’s knee cap or that I am on cloud 9 after a long but rewarding week at a trade show. 
Do these two rookies have it all figured out? Not even a little bit. But can we say we are working on love; buying on time, without somebody, lovin’ ain’t worth a dime? Still no, Alan Jackson would get your for copyright. What I think couples should really hang their hat on is knowing that you’re not always going to be walking in the same direction in all moments of your life together, and that’s okay. Those are the moments to truly embrace.