Sunday, January 9, 2011

What Then?

" People may live as much retired from the world as they please;
but sooner or later, before they are aware,
they will find themselves debtor or creditor to somebody."

  I was sitting up in the middle of the night with yet another heat pack on. I started reading a very interesting blog.

 This young woman was describing growing up on a farm, and how much she loved it. She describes how the decision by her parents to sell the farm had affected her.
 Her parents were aging and their health was failing, as we all know this is a very physical lifestyle and job. They could no longer handle running the farm. A very hard decision for them I am sure.
 They had decided to retire and enjoy the rest of their lives (rightly so) for as long as they could still get around, and the health problems were manageable.
 Being a farmer I know this is a very hard thing to think about and to actually do it , would be extremely difficult. The lifestyle change alone would be life altering.
 I am sure her parents agonized over this decision for years; they would have wanted to keep everyone happy. It is not an easy decision. They would never want to hurt their children. They had to think about their future.
 Let's be honest here; everyone has dreams of their retirement and how it will be. They will be able to relax and do the things they always wanted. Things would be easier. Just enjoy the rest of their lives in relative peace.
 Why should farmers be any different? They have worked very hard their whole lives. It is a very demanding and physical job. There is probably not going to be a big pension plan or big bank account at the end for most.
 The only way this farmer is going to be able to have a retirement like everyone else, who has always expected it, is to sell his home and life. It is like his R.R.S.P.
 The financial upkeep and taxes on the farm alone would make his meager Old Age Pension dwindle very fast.
 Someday we will have to make this decision. I would never want to sell  my girls home and take this farm and all their memories away from them.
 This farm (in my mind) belongs to them as much as us, they have worked on it, given up many things, and put up with all our struggles to get where we are today.
 I  hope we will be able to run this farm as long as we can.Our health will become an issue I am sure. Hopefully we can come up with a plan to make everyone happy and keep the farm in the family.
 I love it so much here, but I will not watch it fall down around us, and someday resent it for keeping us trapped here.
 It is a very hard thing to think about and we still have time.(hopefully)
 What is the answer? I guess we will not really know till we get there.



  1. Dear Buttons, I understand exactly how you feel by looking at the farmers here and their strugle keeping up with one of the maine occupation which is very importaint as well for our country. that is why I prefer to buy the Milk, food and ect. only from our country products. there for I have huge respect for farmers knowing what they go through to give us good products. I think from now on if you could start working to a long term plan everything should work out well for you and the Farm wish you all the best importaint you are determined and have the passion for your farm.

  2. Dear Sheron Thank you. It is very important to support your local farmers, it is important to know where your food comes from. Everything works out the way it should.

  3. Hi Buttons. This is complicated, isn't it? I completely agree with you about valuing and supporting local small farmers. I'm not one but I buy as much of my food from them as I can.
    But you're also talking about the way families change as we all grow older and grow up. The children have worked on the farm and have their memories and their identities there. The ideal solution would be for them to take over the farm and provide the parents with suitable accommodation on the same farm. Hmmm. Doesn't always happen like that. Children go on their way and make their own lives. It's lovely for them to be able to come back. But I also believe it's essential for us parents to look after our own needs. You can't keep the place on and struggle yourselves for the sake of your children. and similarly you can't demand that they take care of you in your old age. As I'm now in my 60s with children who are making their own lives and a mother I'm taking care of, I've decided to go into warden-supported accommodation when I get to 80. the children are more than welcome to visit and take tea, but I won't need them to come running for every little thing.
    Life changes and we must all take care of ourselves first. Change isn't always easy!

  4. Marianne. Thank you for your insight.You are more knowledgeable then I. I am still creeping to the sixties. I believe you are right, my girls never expect anything.They just want us to be happy. I hope never to have my girls looking after me but, I also help look after my Mother so I know things are complicated in life. Sometimes things work out not as planned.
    I applaud your decision to have a plan. You are a smart women.

  5. As a 29 year old farmer this issue has come up in our household.
    We would love to have a family and are hoping to be blessed with children that would want to take over the farm someday, saying this we also have looked in to the Canadian Land Trust Alliance,this option would allow our land to be protected for future generations insuring it not to be used for subdivisions etc.
    Our farm came with so much history,we are creating history and I hope to live all my days right here on the farm like past generations have.
    "Life takes care of those who dare to live it." Maya Angelou


The mind grows by what it feeds on. J.G. Holland

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