A Farmer’s Walker
Farmers like to trick out their equipment. Melissa’s four-wheeler has a front basket loaded with holders for clippers, a hammer, screwdrivers, and alligator clips for the electric fence. She has rolls of marking tape and a bottle of water and a spot for her chain saw.

So when she came home from the hospital Thanksgiving Day, the proud new owner of a walker, I knew it’d wouldn’t be long.

Sure enough, she spent the first two weeks trickin’ out the walker. I kept telling her she’d be done using it before she got it all set up just the way she wanted it—basket for papers and books, holder for markers, pens, a small scissors, and a magnifying glass for studying the fossils she finds in the creek, trash bag, her cell phone/headset, a cup holder, and her MP3 player. It’s like a rolling office.

But she wasn’t done. Next were the flames and cartoons:

At first she just used the walker in the house, but as cabin fever set in, she used it to walk the dogs down to the mailbox.

She just had her six-week checkup, and all looks great. The screws and cables holding her three vertebrae in place are still aligned correctly and the bone grafts are looking great. She’s supposed to start taking the neck brace off a few hours a day to start conditioning her neck muscles—they haven’t had to hold up her head for quite some time. Then comes physical therapy, and then comes me transitioning from Head Farmer to my proper place as Back-Up Farmer. 
Won’t happen for another month, but that’s okay. The animals and I have our routine down now, and things go pretty smoothly. As the cattle and llamas are eating their grain, I stand in the sun, waiting for the water trough to fill, and think, “Hey, look at me. I’m a farmer.”
Happy 2011!

7 thoughts on “

  1. Good golly, Miss Molly! I may have missed something but I hadn’t realized Melissa would be out of her muck boots for so long a period! She must be going out of her mind. :o( Sitting still does not seem like it would come naturally to her. (Hee-hee, how about coercing her to do a couple of blog posts? I know she can do it.) And what a load you’re handling. But that’s what partners are for, eh? Wish we lived close so we could help out on a daily basis. We sure would.

  2. The two of you are so lucky to have each other. 🙂 That’s one one mad, wicked, tricked out walker! So glad to hear the recovery is going well…sounds like everyone is in good spirits, which is the most important (and helpful) thing of all!

  3. Oh wow! I don’t want to laugh at her condition, but that walker kicks much @ss! Fantastic use of her new wheels, although I cringed at the thought of her slipping out there, you must have well behaved dogs! I too, didn’t realize the extent of her surgery and she is lucky to have such a supportive partner to help her through this, I know she is probably chomping at the bit to get back in there and do things “her way”, don’t we all cringe a bit at the thought of handing over “our duties” to another? Best wishes for a speedy recovery and you being able to become the 2nd farmer in command again!

  4. Mama Pea…yeah, 6-8 weeks of quiet, then gradually working herself back to full time. I’ve finally found my groove, however, and now I don’t even whine when it’s time to suit up. Wish you lived closer too!

    Mama Tea…Spirits are up and down, as usual. Consider yourself lucky you aren’t in the neighborhood—otherwise Melissa would make you ooh and ahh over her x-rays.

    Erin…Laughing is fine! She looked really funny rolling that thing down the driveway. One dog was on a leash—too old to pull, and the other two dogs were loose.

  5. Congrats to both of you for finding ways to be bold Movers & Shakers with humor–and even a certain rebellious grace–in the face of adversity.

    I’ve been thinking of your farm a lot lately– we just welcomed a new bull with the honest-to-goodness name of “Errol Flynn” and he’s making the New Year verrrry interesting for our cow and heifer. As much as we delight in the…er…”job” he’s doing, we remind ourselves regularly of your 11/20/10 post!

  6. This reminds me of my mother, her walker has ‘offroad’ wheels and she hauls everything from sap from the maple trees, wood for the fireplace and water for the chicken house. It is truly a farm vehicle.
    Glad to see Melissa is up and moving around.

  7. Just stumbled upon your blog through a link from another (yogiclairebear). How delighted I am to see you are in Minnesota! My husband, sons and I emigrated here from Minneapolis in 2002. My family is in Farmington and extended family in NE Iowa on farms. So happy to see the farm and landscape photos. I’ll become a regular reader.

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