I can’t be sure, but I’m fairly confident that nobody ever said life was easy… if they did, they either didn’t really mean it or they were not from this planet.
The stresses of everyday life gets to all of us at some point. Some people think that when we say we are working towards a more “Simple Way of Life” they assume that we are wanting to have an easy, carefree life. They then proceed to tell me they are jealous and wish they could do it (more about that in our next blog). I’m not sure what gives anyone the impression that Homesteading is easy. Maybe it’s the word “Simple” assuming that it means easy.
A “Simple” way of life is certainly not easy.
There should be a better term… hmmmm…. Maybe you can comment and let me know what term is better to use.
The phrase is used to indicate that we want to control things in our life more. We want to grow our own vegetables knowing they are free of unknown chemicals in commercial fertilizers, pesticides, etc. We want to raise our own meat knowing exactly what they have been fed, the condition of their health, and to know that they were raised and treated with respect. We like to make our own household products – free of parabens, phthalates, formaldehyde, and many other harsh chemicals that we contaminated our house and ourselves with for so many years.
This life is certainly not “simple”. It’s very hard work and causes a great deal of stress. Currently, we both have full-time regular jobs and we run our own business with the homestead. So, two full-time jobs… but the homestead itself is like a full-time job with daily overtime and no vacation. On top of jobs, there are the everyday stresses… we need to finish the re-model on our house, we are helping our daughter plan her wedding. Our oldest has gone back to college, and my second oldest just moved back in. Life is a never-ending bucket of stresses.
So, what to do about it? Here's something interesting... My oldest son has never had a headache in his life… can you believe that! Wouldn’t that be a superpower to have. Me, on the other hand, have enough to make up for the both of us. We have our headaches, and our bruises, cuts, and all the other tell-tell signs of running a homestead. We handle these signs of stress like anyone does – homesteader or not, we relax and refocus.
“How in the heck do you relax when you just said that you work yourselves to death?” I know that some of just thought that question in your head. If you are a homesteader or a farmer, you will understand. For those of you that don’t understand, let me tell you – it’s not easy! At the end of the day, Jeff and I can reflect on all that we have accomplished. “Look at what we have done!”, or “We did this!”, and we also contemplate what more we want to do. Just seeing how far we have come, and what we have accomplished makes it all worth it. It’s actually pleasing; Sitting on the porch with a cup of coffee and stare at our little place is very relaxing and calming. The stress of the day melts away and we can’t wait until tomorrow to see what else we can achieve.
So, as the far as the word “Simple” goes… we do not mean that it is easy in any way, we mean uncomplicated. But saying we want an “Uncomplicated Way of Life” doesn’t really roll of the tongue as well and still doesn’t define what we consider homesteading to be.