I had a great opportunity to talk to our dear friend, Sweet Norma. I have intended to call her for such a long time and I finally pulled my day together that I got the call in. And I wish it hadn’t taken me so long because it was such a great chat.
When I decided to write her story I wanted to start at the beginning and make her talk about her life in the way that I wanted to hear it. But before I knew it, she was telling her wonderful stories and I realized that hearing her story as she remembered gave meaning to it. The things that she was sharing were the things that were on her mind, that were close to her at the time. I guess that it changed my course for Sweet Norma’s chapters- they are going to come in the order that she is reliving them rather than as they were lived.
We talked for what seemed like only minutes but before I knew it Sweet Norma was telling me she needed to feed the chickens, haul in the wood for night, and finish all of the evening chores. I walked away from our visit honestly inspired. I shouldn’t be surprised, because it is this very purpose that I am sharing Sweet Norma with you. She is inspiring! This new bit of inspiration is what I want to tell you about.
Along our conversation we talked about why this lifestyle is so important to us, especially as rancher wives. I commented that we certainly don’t choose this lifestyle to get rich because its not likely to happen. After listening to me comment about all of MY reasons for this life, like how the work and sacrifice will turn us into good people and how through roughing it, we will find what is really important to us (and of course I assume that she is thinking the same stuff…). When I finally came up for air she said, “But we are already rich!”
Here I was talking about how the blessings from living on the ranch would come eventually and she was reminding me that it is waking up to the fresh country air that makes us rich. There is nothing we have to do to earn this type of gold, we only have to realize that it is there. Its having the opportunities to work, even if it means that Sweet Norma has to spend hours everyday shoveling the snow (she has more than 2 1/2 feet!). We enjoy every bit of this life, because even the bad days are good.
I don’t know if it is from living on the ranch or living in the country (or both) but there is something so honest about this life. Maybe its the work that does it- you only grow a good crop when you plant good seed, in good soil and you give it good care. You only have healthy animals when you have good care for them. You can try to take the short cuts, but those half-efforts will show. And living such a life can’t help but make you a good, honest hard working person. Someone people would proud to call their neighbor.
Living a cowboy lifestyle isn’t for everyone- we need someone that can live the city life to be the businessman or the doctor. And I’m glad that we have those that love what the city has to offer so that I can live my life on the ranch. We each have our own place where our dreams come true and living that life makes us rich.
This was the message that Sweet Norma shared with me. We are in this life to get rich, but rich in love, happiness, devotion and satisfaction. I’m lucky enough to get rich being a rancher’s wife.