Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Living on a Dairy Farm

After we moved to the Lynden area, we moved quite a bit.  We lived in a rental house for about 2 years, then in a duplex for about the same amount of time.  Then our finances were getting worse and we needed to move to a more economical rental.  We then moved to an apartment converted from a storage shed/garage.  This was definitely a move down in quality, but we made the best of it.  Before moving in I spent days painting and cleaning, so we wouldn't have to pay a damage deposit (and to make it livable)

This apartment was located in a functioning dairy farm...the holding barns were just 40 feet from our windows.  It was nearly constant ewe de colonge.  We moved  just after Jason was born.  The only heat we had was a wood burning stove, and the only wood was wet and rotten.  We moved in January.

There wasn't a tub, so we stopped up the shower and had shallow baths for the boys.  While living there we were convicted that watching cable TV was not good for our marriage/family, so we got rid of our TV and spent the evening together in our 14 X 12 foot living room (half of which was taken up by the wood burning stove), reading.

A major milestone in our lives happened while we were there.  We took a realistic look at our situation and came to the conclusion that Daryl needed to step out of the drapery business and go back to school to learn a trade he had always wanted to learn - machining.  So he started school and I started working more hours, many more hours.

Jeremy's time in the hospital happened while we lived there, but there were several very scary incidents that happened while we lived there.   The first was when Daryl woke up one night and could not breath.  He felt like a Mac truck was sitting on his chest.  I rushed him to the ER, and we found out that he had an ulcer.  Very scary, but we were so thankful that it was nothing worse.

The second was that I came down with a bad cold, a bad headache and my neck went very stiff and sore.  I went to see my doctor and he was concerned that I had meningitis.  After a ton of tests, we found that I just had a sore neck and a cold.  Again, so thankful that it wasn't worse!

One morning Daryl had left for school and I was doing some housework before leaving for work.  I soon realized that Jeremy was no longer in the house, so I went outside to see if he was playing in our yard.  He was no where to be seen.  I looked all over the farm, leaving Jason to fend for himself inside (I believe he was napping).  After looking everywhere I could possibly think of, I began to believe that something awful had happened - that he had slipped into the manure pond.  I'd heard of that happening to children on farms.  I frantically called Daryl as school and he came right home.

As he got close to our place he started looking around.  He found Jeremy wandering around in the field across the street from us, soaking wet.  This was sometime in was very cold outside.  He had decided that he wanted to go to that field and the ditch didn't look scary.  It had a lot of water going through that ditch though, and he remembers to this day how close he came to drowning that day.

Daryl arrived at our apartment with a very cold, wet boy.  We got him washed up and warmed up and began discussing plans to move.  It just wasn't worth it.  Jeremy did not suffer any consequences from his adventure, but it was forever etched in his memory and our too.

God's grace in our lives - it could have turned out so differently.  But God had other plans for Jeremy and nothing can thwart God's plan.  Jeremy has been given an allotted number of days on this earth, and that day was not destined to be his last day on earth, and for that we are so thankful!

By the end of the month, we were moving into another apartment, it was safer, but not necessarily an improvement - it was a converted potato shed ;)