I walked out the front door this morning on my way to the soaproom. I was immediately struck with what a beautiful morning it was. It was nice and cool with a beautiful blue sky with white puffy clouds. The sun was just coming up over the trees. The goats were all at the back of the barn waiting for the boys to call their names so they could be milked. The baby goats were running around. And I thought to myself…
I love my life.
I do. I love it. Is it perfect? Of course not. Like everyone else, I have lots of problems. But problems are a part of life – once one problem is solved, another will quickly rise up to take its place.
It’s not the fact that my life is “perfect” that makes me love it. It’s the fact that I am finally living the life I’ve always wanted.
It hasn’t always been like this. There was a time when I was living in Trenton, New Jersey. Those of you who are familiar with Trenton know that it is about as polar opposite from Indiana as you could possibly be.
We had a big house, but it was on a tiny lot with a small fenced-in back yard. We had an incredible security system because it wasn’t a safe neighborhood. In fact, Jim had gone into our basement one day and discovered two homeless people sleeping there. There was also prostitution further down our street. And Trenton had a known gang problem.
So why were we living there? Jim was teaching in inner-city Trenton at a charter school for children who weren’t succeeding. We lived there for three years and they were great years. I learned a lot while living there and reaching out to Jim’s students and our neighbors.
But it wasn’t my dream life.
We left New Jersey in 2004 and moved to Charlestown, Indiana. And I was so much closer to my dream. We had 3 acres for the children to run around and play on. I was able to homestead and that’s where I got my first dairy goats and where Goat Milk Stuff was born. We now had a family business where we could all work together and teach the children about running a business.
But moving to our current farm in Scottsburg, Indiana in 2012 really filled some desires that I had. I always wanted the children to have woods. Our Charlestown house only had a couple of pine trees on it. I wanted them to be able to climb trees and build forts and explore and conquer.
I always wanted the children to have a creek. I wanted them to watch the water movement and wade in it when it was hot out.
The Scottsburg farm has both woods and a creek. And that makes me very happy for some silly reason.
What about you? Where are you in your life? Are you pleased with where you are? Or do you have a bigger dream you’re working toward?
It’s important to know that I loved the previous versions of my life as well. I wasn’t wishing away that present toward a hoped-for future. But I kept working toward my dream. I kept moving in the right direction (despite there being some backward steps at times).
I just want to encourage you that if you find yourself not loving your current life, figure out what it is you do want. And figure out some steps you can take to get there. It may not happen quickly (in fact, it rarely does). It took me til my forties to reach where I am right now.
Some people may get to their dreams sooner and some people may get there later. But if you keep the goal in mind and make small sacrifices along the way to help you get there, it is possible.
Don’t let anyone (including yourself) tell you that it isn’t possible to achieve your dreams.
Simply keep working, keep saving, and keep sacrificing. And most of all, be patient. We rarely get out dreams fulfilled as quickly as we would hope.
But that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
My life is so much sweeter because I didn’t get here quickly or easily. I appreciate it so much more because I know all the blood, sweat, tears, and sacrifice that went into it.
What are you working toward?