I have a bookshelf made out of an old chicken coop from the first Bedlam Farm, I love it, I keep my books and a few lenses there and looking at it in the afternoon light, I realized that lenses and books symbolize so much of my life, I can’t imagine living without both of them. I have an e-book reader, and I love my books, they do not seem to be going away, there are more of them than ever around here. I believe the world will encompass both of them, and I am grateful for that, as the author of 27 books.
Life is a process, a compendium of things and symbols and feelings and connections and emotions. Maria and I have decided to part with Ted the ram and also Kim the ewe, we do not wish to be caring for nine or ten sheep, it is expensive and time consuming and we wish to keep a firm control on the number of animals here. At the first Bedlam Farm, I realized how dangerous and unhealthy it is to keep more animals that once can know, care for an afford.
Of course, within seconds there was the usual nasty and intrusive e-mail, this one to Maria (I get them fairly often, although less and less over time) suggesting that by agreeing to part with some of the animals, she was obviously being controlled by me. If you share yourself online, you open yourself up to people like, Maria is also getting used to it. She answered the woman more kindly than I might have, she said she obviously knew nothing about either one of us if she could write an e-mail like that.
I love working things out with Maria, we often have different feelings about things, we are both passionate and intense about almost everything. This one was tough, Maria was upset at the idea of letting any animals go, she loves all of them very genuinely, she has so much rich and wonderful emotion. But we always work it out, we came to a compromise with are both comfortable with and that required both of us to give up.
To be honest, I would have parted with more than two of our sheep, but they are Maria’s and she sells their wool and loves them, so I am fine with it, and so is she. We both have a lot of experience with being controlled, we knew what it really is. Maybe, Maria said, she should have just told the woman to mind her own business.
No, I said, she didn’t really need or deserve an answer at all.
Our life together is rich and good and it is never sweeter than we each of us has to learn to heed and understand the other and take away this joyous and almost miraculous feeling that we were heard and understood, that our feelings were respected and listened to. That is so new to both of us, I think we will never quite get used to it.