Watch how I link all of this together…

The current windchill on the other side of this wall I’m facing as I write this is -4’F; a veritable heat wave compared to the -28’F yesterday rang in. (Snow day!!) ┬áRegardless, pulling myself out of this computer chair where I’m in the process of making a new workout playlist, (have you HEARD Banks?), to go check on my chicken girls was a struggle. Then you get out there and they’re huddled together making their little chicken music sounds and I reach in and pet them and forget how cold it is.

A bunch of snow fell on my head as I tried to lean over to take this. See how I’m smiling anyway?
I suppose there are a lot of reasons why I’m so enamored with these dirty birds, but when I’m tromping out there in snow above my knees on the sides of the path I’ve worn between their coop and the house, there’s primarily one: it makes me feel connected to my family.
I was born my father’s daughter in many ways: I look like him and his side of the family and our preferences in most things are similar, including writing. These traits link me to his parents and brother and sisters. They were what my mother’s family called ‘the townies’.
Baby me and my Daddy.
On the other hand, I am very close with my mother’s mother, but aside from an adoration for farms and farmhouses which was birthed of my mother’s heritage of farmers, I don’t always feel like I have as much in common with them. I would like to think I could make it as a farmer, but my grandma is HARD CORE. She has been a widow for over two decades and in that time has killed an opossum with a hoe, had a stroke, was paralyzed on one side of her body, and continues to live in a collapsing farm house that has stood for generations. Alone. In the middle of a tiny farm town in central Indiana. I ONCE WATCHED HER THROW A DEAD MOUSE OUT WITH HER BARE HANDS. I wish I could be that, but I’m not. So heading out the 20 feet to my little hobby chickens makes me feel (even in a tiny way) connected to my maternal family. I walk out there and think of the family I’ve known (and not known) who would have made a longer and more involved walk out to check on their certainly NOT hobby farms in far below freezing temps. (And without an iPhone flashlight to show them where to step…) I love that walk because I know my history and I know that my Mumma’s family (and Daddy’s- they were only recent townie converts…) did the same thing before me. It is a good (albeit short) walk out there to Bicken and Chicken Bicken.
I TOLD you it was an old farmhouse!
It is these emotions which cause me to constantly struggle through navigating a relationship with Isaac’s birth family. All of this farm heritage is now his as well, but he has such rich additional background that I want him to feel ┬álinked to. When I desire to feel connected to family I never knew, I can understand how logical and emotional it is for adoptees to know their blood relatives. I am his mom! I want him to have it all; I want him to have walks that make him feel connected to ALL of his family. The chasm between wanting it and taking the steps to make it happen is difficult for me to bridge, but I’m trying. Miracles happen all the time, though right? I mean, did I completely forget to tell you that on the coldest day of the year near the beginning of January, Bicken and Chicken Bicken started laying eggs, after nearly 3 months of nothing?! Here’s what I think Jesus says to that and to the chasm: “Take heart! I have overcome the world!” (And menopausal chickens… and complicated families…) (John 16:33)
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