Wednesday, March 9, 2016

The cows are sorted!

According to my FaceBook newsfeed, yesterday was International Women’s Day.

I never really considered myself a feminist, but I am coming to realize that that is because I grew up in a small bubble where I never had any reason to. I have been fortunate enough to be surrounded by strong female figures, especially my mother who never let “That’s a man’s job!” be a thing. There was never  “men’s work” or “women’s work” there was always just work. When we would square bale she was always out stacking the bales as my dad threw them. She was the one who would correct dystocias if a horse or cow had one. Heck, she’s the one who would run the 2,500 lb bull into the head catch to doctor him when he got a wire cut around his nethers that swelled him up as big as a softball so he couldn’t retract it, and the vet said we might as well put him down. Soaking it in Epsom salt and covering it in cut heal twice a day made him so hateful towards her that he tried to kill her every time he saw her, but she did fixed him. She also helped load that big ole boy in the trailer when we had to ship him. Ungrateful sucker. She is the one who runs the family business (as president) and self-taught herself everything from veterinary medicine to accounting whilst keeping the house clean and the grass cut, and clearing a fence row or two with her chainsaw.

In short, I’ve been incredibly lucky to rarely see the discrimination against girls that I read about online. I never watched Disney movies and thought that I need a prince to come rescue me, or thought that all I was meant to be was a Barbie doll. I always knew that I could be an engineer, or a farmer, or a whatever the hell I wanted to be if I wanted to and worked at it. I’m beginning to see how incredibly lucky I was with that.

Case in point, CA and I helped a friend of his work cows the other week, and even though I was probably the one there with the most experience moving cows I got the “girl job” of record keeping. And I resented the hell out of it. Well, I should have known better than to open my big mouth because as we were working cows last night I got the “girl job” again. As in, I was the only one in the pen herding the little buggers. What can I say? My family doesn’t discriminate. Mom, Dad, and CA all stood outside the pen (read as: not A$$ deep in mud) and encouraged the calves towards the trailer while I waded around in the muck and hit them in the butt with a stick. It was glorious. Until one of them went cray-cray and I fell down and almost got trampled to death. Damn heifer. At that point CA jumped over the fence to help corral the crazy one to get her gone. I am super grateful for the help.

I think that’s one reason that farming appeals to me, at the end of the day I think mom and dad were right – there isn’t "my work", "your work", "his work", "her work"; there is just a job to be done, and you work together to get it that way. It is a great equalizer.

So, happy belated Women’s Day, and I hope you don't have as much rain and mud as we do right now!

Hey guys, the cows are sorted!

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