When the Poles Tilt

I’ve been gone from my blog for several weeks.  Call it a health break.  I had a spindle cell sarcoma removed, and for the time being, the Grim Reaper hasn’t shown himself. It takes a lot of time to recover, though, if you’re serious about recovery.  I am. Good diet and an exercise routine are as important as friends and a good night’s sleep.  It also requires continuing education.

Because I had read The First Cell by Azra Raza, I agreed to the extensive surgery.  I won’t creep you out with the details.  Based on my son’s recommendation, I picked up a copy of How Not to Die by Michael Greger and Gene Stone.  I had recently read The China Study by T. Colin Campbell.  The two diet books corroborated these facts:

*Vegans live longer than omnivores AND vegetarians.

*A whole-food, plant-based diet protects against premature death by heart disease, cancer, and most of the ills that befall we mortals.

So, what’s a chicken farmer going to do? Become a vegan, of course.

Before the surgery, I gave my laying hens to a chicken farmer friend.  I didn’t feel bad about it, because her chickens have a safe place to free range and a warm place to roost in the winter.  I knew I’d be hard pressed to care for the flock during radiation, but I kept the seven old girls, most of whom no longer lay.

When I told my sister what I’d done, she said, “Let me get this straight.  You gave away the layers and kept the old chickens?”

Yep.  The old girls are pets more than livestock.  It’s always been that way out here.  I get a few eggs a week now, but more importantly, I have to get outside every day and take care of my tiny flock, in sunshine or clouds, in wind and rain.  My girls dance around my feet when I bring a treat of millet or mealworms.  Out among the trees, I see that life goes on.

I don’t eat eggs anymore, but my dog does.  Being vegan is my choice, but it’s not one I can make for anyone else, including my dear husband. I still have beef and sausage in the freezer for the family and friends I feed.  I just pile on the grains and beans and greens, the fruit and veggies, when I feed them at the big kitchen table.

The chickens still have a role to play on the farm.  As I recover, I’m remodeling coops and rearranging garden fences so chickens can clear the weeds and keep the bugs in check between growing seasons.

When your world comes crashing down around you, you start over again.  I have. I guess being a vegan farmer isn’t such a stretch for an agnostic preacher’s daughter.  The irony tastes a little like homegrown spinach.

9 thoughts on “When the Poles Tilt

  1. Knew you’d said something about health but was not sure if should ask. Glad surgery went well. And hope the chili you commented on brings you some joy (and lots of easy leftovers) as you swap to a vegan diet and continue your recovery.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. My recovery is a best-case scenario, I think. I’ll let you know about the chili. My son and I are thinking about a vegan cooking blog. We are being very creative, especially with the spices. 🙂


  2. I knew you’d said something about health on FB, but I didn’t know til now what it was. Glad surgery went well. Hoping the chili you commented on brings some joy (and lots of easy leftovers) as you recover and transition to a vegan diet. I love your care for the chickens, by the way. Glad to hear you’re taking care of yourself too. Hugs.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I wondered what happened and finding out the things you have gone through my prayer is that you keep sending little messages. I am sure I am not the only one who reads them. I haven’t gone through your health problems, but for me, if I didn’t have my cats and family to take care of, I would have given up several years ago. Mine is my knees and each morning the first steps on the floor to the bathroom is the hardest. Once I keep walking, it is less painful and I keep my muscles working. I try and rest between little projects. God bless you and in my novels in one of the volumes my character Helen has a pet rooster named Reggie and a hen Henrietta that dance to music. I had a real Reggie but he use to chase dogs and sometimes kids on their way to school and had to be given to a family member who had lots of chickens. I had family members give me lots of stories of how he became the protected of their flocks by chasing off stray dogs and finally met his demise when they ganged up on him.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. What a great chicken story!
    We are riding out the virus on the farm. The chickens give me purpose…and eggs.
    I have a new book, but in-person promotion will just have to wait.
    Take care and keep writing.


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