Our Self Sufficient Garden
This past summer has been rather hectic and stressful for Jane and I at our off grid home. It is not a matter of things we created ourselves but reactions from friends and family to our new found confidence with our choice of living off the grid.
It might seem strange to you reading this that we would sometimes second guess our decision to move away from all that we knew and start a new life off the grid- but it does happen sometimes. After all, it has been over 16 years now. You would think we would be settled into a simple pattern by now.
And when we start second guessing our decisions nothing good happens in our lives. What went wrong? Why aren't we happy? we ask ourselves. Ultimately, we had begun to compare our lives to 'what it might have been' had we stayed put. Friends and family would still be there for us.
All those security nets and safety valves we had spent years putting into place. High School friends, family who resent us moving away... all would still be there for us.
But, ultimately we have to make our own life in this World. Make our own choices... Years ago, I made the wrong assumption that it was actually a move that would benefit Jane the most because she needed a new start, it was imperative for her in order for her to grow as a person.
Wrongly? Yes, because more than Jane, it was me who needed to move. To be away from all those safety nets, those social relationships that held me in bondage to a life that was not my own.
In the end I have seen that this move was not really just about what Jane needed, but a move to what we both needed. In the farming area we grew up in there was no wilderness, no wild places left, not enough trees and no space for a true expression of who I was.
It was difficult to find a life that I had no examples of in my direct path, and no references I could read about (remember this was 1992, before the internet took over information access). How could I possibly find the life I was born to down there?
My apologies to Jane for telling friends and family that it was 'her' that drove this move to off grid living. It was not until years later that Jane actually put the pieces together and 'discovered?' my writing abilities. "It is the only way that you truly can express yourself Les", she said.
And, it's true. I'm not much of a talker really.
Living off the grid has given me new ears which to listen with and I talk through my hands most often, by writing... thank you Jane for helping me put this last piece of my life together.
Where did we discover these things? Oddly enough, it was in our garden. More than once has a revelation happened there until we now see our garden as a place of great spiritual impact for us.
It is a meeting place of the wild and the tame. The wilderness is at our garden's edge. It creeps in to dominate our lives and someday it will when we are gone. For now, it is a spiritual clearing where Jane and I can truly fit in and can hear not only each other but God himself.
I am quite reluctant to talk about religion and how it fills our lives here, we are rare church goers and find most organized religion to be most self serving as a 'networking opportunity' for the most part, without the spiritual impact of a simple walk to the garden.
Only on our canoe trips do we feel the same as we do in the space we cleared to grow our own food. We are here not to live the lives of our family's choosing, or that of our friends. In order to have a true impact we have to embrace the idea that we have been put here for a reason... a mission if you will.
When we embrace our mission and the responsibility it brings with it then we are truly alive.
True peace can only happen in our lives when we look inside for the answers and stop comparing our lives to what they 'might have been'.
Then we can really relax knowing that we have filled our days with things that are real.
It had been months since I felt relaxed and when I laid down to soak up the last warm rays of sun that would fall this summer before the cooling breezes brings winter along for us, our dog 'Red' sensed it too and flopped down beside me.
I am happy to report that we are back on track with the Living Off the Grid Homestead and please forgive us for needing some time to reconnect with what really is important in our life, like Our Self Sufficient Garden.