Growing up my mom wasn’t the typical “farm wife” and my dad wasn’t the typical farmer. They are both well educated and they came into farming in their 30s after falling in love with sheep. We had over 100 acres and even more sheep over the years. And while I grew up on a farm, my example of a “farm wife” was an empowered woman who also held a very good job off the farm (as well as a dad working off the farm).
Now in my 30s I find myself married to a farmer who grew up with traditional “farm wives” all around him. I struggle knowing that for him I am not going to be that woman who is there every day to keep his house clean and three meals a day on the table. I’m going to make frozen food, get takeout, and hire a cleaning lady. I cherish my time on the farm, but when I’m home and not at work I want to be farming or with my family, not being the 30’s model of a perfect wife. I remind him when he looks at me with that look of “my mom used to do it” that he knew who and what he was marrying. I am more than happy to take him food in the fields and help with his laundry, but I cherish my job off the farm as well and my world doesn’t revolve around being his wife. Maybe I get this from growing up with a very liberal woman as a role model. As I think of what I want my daughter to be in the future, I hope she learns to be independent and a strong woman with the values of a farm girl, and a woman who can take care of her husband (or wife if she so chooses) and her family as good as I do.