Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Marriage Counseling - Do you need a map?

I have been thinking it would be an awesome idea to have a reality television show, where farm/ranch couples complete farm/ranch chores together in time constraints for prizes.  Who wants to play?

Jake and I have been working together a lot through this calving season. Jake has been calving three groups of cows, which include the U's, X's and Y's.  The Y's are the first calf heifers and demand more time and attention than the other two groups.  I take the girls to school and then help Jake with whatever he needs me to do.  Some days I take mineral out, bottle feed orphan calves, open gates, help feed hay, move cow/calf pairs to the kick out pastures, help get cows in and document anything funny or unusual on social media.

Many of our problems in communication are because Jake assumes since I love him so much and we have been married nearly 10 years that I am his clone and think just like him.  My confession is sometimes the way he explains things, it sounds as if he is speaking a foreign language. I explained it to him like this, when you give me directions on things it is the same as if I ask you to go into the girls room and pick out an outfit (that matches) for them to wear.  He is unable to do this.  In my mind it should be easy, because I open their drawers and see many things that match.  He opens the drawer picks out three items that are various shades of pink and says "will this work?"
The same things happen to me when I work in his domain. There are thousands of acres here, divided by miles of fences and I find it complicated to get to where I need to be many times (although I am getting better).  They have nicknames for most of the fields, none of them are labeled and there is more than one way to get to all of them.  I am only able to enter and exit through certain gate holes because some of the electric fence openers are too tight for me to physically open.  This means I drive around a lot.  I also will not stick my leg out and put the rubber sole of my shoe on the hot fence and drive over it.  I am neither talented nor tall enough to do this.  I just drive until there is a gate opening. Jake often gets frustrated with me when he wants me to take mineral to a field (that we were just in yesterday) and I don't know instantaneously which one he is talking about.  One day I said "you need a map around this place, not everyone knows every crevasse of this area". After more than a few intense discussions about not understanding where exactly he wanted the mineral feeder placed, I walked into the office to find this on the board.

It is suddenly all clear (enter sarcasm).

** The bottom notes are from the girls.  Including cursive practice and cakes.

This the second in a series of Marriage Counseling posts.


  1. When my husband talks to his cattle friends it just sounds like low grunts to me but they understand each other perfectly. I know just where you're coming from.

  2. I think you guys could just talk your issues out first. I don’t think that this situation you’re in is too big to be irresolvable on your own. I mean seriously, you’re feeling so problematic over a simple matter of getting through a gate and “matching” clothes.

    Russell Dill