Take time to consider the big picture
Measuring powder, mixing milk, filling bottles, feeding lambs, carrying buckets, feeding calves, washing bottles and the list goes on.
Add to that cleaning things, cooking porridge, making healthy juice and the family breakfast, driving Mary to catch school bus, home again and milking cows.
Then follows another morning with another round of routine, day after day.
Watching hungry, wriggly tailed lambs breakfasting, I do spare thoughts for others with quite different morning routines. Their own lists might include slow travel in traffic, early shifts at a factory or office, driving trucks or working in garages, kitchens, schools, sheds or high rises. Everyone is a small part of a whole.
I ponder on this while listening to satisfied sucking, and milk bubbling in bottles. Nearing end of spring after weeks of routine it can become tedious with the same patterns repeating for those early hours each day. Farm life does involve repetition, sometimes resulting in unenthusiastic ‘‘herei-go-again ‘‘ first thing in the morning feelings.
Then I heard this story which inspired me. A guy passing a construction site talked to some of the workers. Hopefully he first put on his hard hat and hi-vis. He asked what they were doing. The first one explained he was sawing a beam, the second pointed out that he was laying bricks, the third one showed him a column he was carving, and other replied that they were fitting windows, pouring concrete, swinging doors and painting walls. Finally one guy proudly told the passer-by that he was building a cathedral. Rather than focussing on his own job he was looking at the big picture, and what a difference that makes.
So what does my ‘‘big picture’’ look like? That growing lambs are destined to put money in our bank, as well as earn valuable export dollars for our country, and meat produced will be a great meal enjoyed by appreciative consumers. That our daughter likes school so much she hasn’t missed a single day in two years and is doing well there. That calves reared will sell at the weaner fair to give us handy cash flow and bonus income for trips planned next year to a friend’s wedding in Queenstown and a vet class reunion in Auckland.
And the even bigger picture is all about building family and home. Celebrating Mary’s 17th birthday next week won’t be just another routine morning, and after time in hospital with pneumonia Mum is staying with us since I am here to care for her rather than having to be away from work. The really big wide picture is growing confidence in my place in God, loving our ‘‘neighbours’’ and learning to be content.
Feeling good about doing something worthwhile does change your outlook. And so off I go to carry another bag of milk powder, measure, mix, fill bottles, feed export-earning lambs, carry buckets to cash-flow calves, clean things, build happy home and family and be glad for another ‘‘routine morning.’’
Joyce Wyllie lives on a sheep and beef farm at Kaihoka on the west coast of Golden Bay.
Lambs enjoy their morning Moozli.