Loss on the homestead

It’s been a long time since we’ve written here, and there’s a reason for that.

We lost a baby.

We could probably skip it and just focus on homesteading and the cool stuff everyone wants to read about but I realized recently that if I didn’t acknowledge the loss of our son, I would never be able to bring myself to write here again. So, in the interest of authenticity and a bright homesteading blog future, I need to acknowledge what has happened in and to our family.

We knew that, sooner or later, we would deal with death on the homestead. I envisioned chickens getting killed by a rogue fox or having to put down a goat or cow due to illness. I knew that getting closer to our food would mean seeing death. But I wasn’t prepared, after three healthy pregnancies in the past 9 years, to lose one of my babies. In April, at the ultrasound where we had hoped to find out our baby’s gender — long past that magical second-trimester mark, and a week past the halfway point — we discovered our baby’s heart had stopped beating.

We delivered him at a local hospital and a few weeks later, we had our first social gathering at our new homestead: a memorial service. It was a beautiful night spent with friends and family, honoring a life that none of us really got to know. We told a story, read a poem, sang songs, and planted a garden in his memory.

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We are learning to live with sorrow, and to walk in hope, and to be grateful and intentional about pouring into the three sweet lives that have been entrusted to us.

Thanks for your patience with our silence. Our son Samuel would have been due on August 15 and this is a month that is very bittersweet as we start new school rhythms — rhythms we thought would be punctuated by his birth.

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This wasn’t how we thought our move to the long-awaited homestead was going to be. But we’ve faced death and survived; it’s the homesteader way.

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