Okay. Yesterday’s post, in which I explored the potential for a degree in Agricultural Psychology, made at least a couple people mad. In the post I was trying to explain that Beau’s ranch management job has turned out to involve much more human management than we expected (in our youthful naivety). So I sometimes tease him that he could really use a degree in Agricultural Psychology.
(I just looked up the word psychology, to be absolutely sure I’m saying what I mean to say, and I am. It is: The science that studies mental, behavioral, and relational processes.)
The careful reader of yesterday’s post would’ve noticed how I expressed that, if Beau has a degree in Agricultural Psychology, I’m his No. 1 customer. See, almost daily he talks me through the frustrations and struggles of life in agriculture (for me, most of them are relational) — and I know for a fact that he helps many of our coworkers through the same kind of stuff. Every once in a while one of us will help him through a low spot, because surely there are frustrating aspects of working for a corporate ranch that even a blind man could see. But Beau, I’m noticing more and more, is not only the leader of the daily charge around here but also the Chief Encourager of the team. I maintain that what I wrote yesterday was intended only to compliment my husband and not at all to criticize his coworkers who indeed have problems as all humans do.
But… whenever you write or speak, there’s a pretty good chance your words will be misunderstood by somebody. That would be why I got some yucky comments in my inbox this morning (look below yesterday’s post at montanamama.me to read them yourself). What’s a gal to do with comments like those? I don’t like to be criticized. I worry much about being hated.
Twelve hours have gone by since I first read those comments, and by now I’m confident in the ol’ “you win some, you lose some” standby. But earlier today I wasn’t doing so good.
Earlier today, I wanted to quit blogging. I wanted to post one final blog, claiming that my computer had caught Coronavirus and that I would be finishing out my yearlong post-every-day contract with myself in the privacy of a notebook which I would later burn because, of course, the world shouldn’t have to see the garbage that comes out of my brain. I was thinking some pretty dark thoughts there for a while.
But then… you know what? Beau was, once again, my Chief Encourager. He read the comments and said, “You can’t quit because of people like this.” He said, “You promised yourself you’d blog every day this year. You should at least finish the year out.”
And that, folks, is why I think he deserves a degree in Agricultural Psychology.
Because he’s right, I can’t. And I did. So I think I will.
Here’s the happiest ending: This afternoon Beau took me with him to Froze-to-Death Pasture, and I rode Doogan, and together we kicked 184 cows into Kinsey (I got to count them through the gate!). My good mom not only helped me to get lunch on the table for the Bangs-vaccinating crew this morning, and then to do the dishes, but she also kept the kids this afternoon so I could ride. It was therapeutic. And I’m feeling pretty blessed.
One more thing: I guess I’m not ashamed to say that I have a real psychologist — but I think it’s nicer if we call her a counselor or a life coach. For whatever reason, I am just one of those people who needs a lot of help processing life. Like, expert help. And that’s okay. I see her every other week for an hour. It’s expensive and it’s a long drive and I am one of the lucky persons in agriculture because my circumstances make it possible for me to get to her. So when I say that it can be challenging for rural folks to get the mental health help they need, I know what I’m talking about.
And that, for tonight anyway, is the end.
© Tami Blake