The first year is always the hardest. Farming isn’t the easiest. Raising children, being an adult, is the not the only love/ hate relationship you will have in your life, but it will be our life long struggle. My endeavor, love, hobby, and business is beginning a family farm on 7 acres with my wife Patricia, my son Quintin, my daughter Cadence, and an unnamed child that will be added during the busiest time of the year, first half of July. Along for the ride to sustainability is my dad, my mom, and my grandparents who have a vast reach when it comes to supporting what we are building here on Dilish Farm. This has not been an easy journey, not that one would expect happiness to come easy, and this journey will never end. This venture started many years ago with a thought before a dream could even be imagined. You don’t imagine that your partner, at any stage, will openly support you, but she did; and when I imagined that some day I would have a farm that would support families, restaurants, and everything in between. My rock told me that everything would come together and I knew that she only had the best intentions for us to be known and successful. If only we would of known that the road we traveled was not paved in gold. one month after our son’s first birthday we experienced a house fire, as renters, that would challenge any family to face their fears. We faced our fears! The Haggerty family lived in a motel, hotel, and a temporary house, that renters insurance partially paid; all while trying to raise our son and live an American Dream. Finding our “dream” property was only the beginning. We wanted to be a farm, so it only seemed smart to ask the USDA for a farm loan. Little did we know that funding from the USDA would make this our first hurdle of many before we could acquire our American “dream.” The USDA had no funding, nor little ground to stand on, when it cam to passing out money for the small farms/ farmers that were looking to invest in the lifestyle. The property had a detached garage that had a cement pit dug out that could have “contaminated” the well. The well 200 ft away and 170ft down. So to be safe We, the buyer’s, had to prove that the well had not been contaminated, by testing from the Washington Department of Ecology, with hope that the USDA would help fund Soil test came back clean of any contaminates however the USDA offered a long letter of how it was to risky for them. It’s funny that I am starting from the beginning when I should be starting from the current scenario in my life.
Life! Life is such a delicate word in its purest form. A beginning, a middle, and a denouement? It presents itself in so many ways; a child has it’s behind wiped, you wipe your own behind, and it comes back around that someone may wipe your behind in old age. One does not begin to learn about the strange nuisances of life until it has become an after thought, a realization, that maybe your parents weren’t crazy after all. I am rambling and should digress to a singular thought. The fire that would set “blaze” to our “American dream” would only take minutes. Minutes can go in slow motion, perhaps when you have children you can understand how the perspective of time can change, and one year seems to pass right before your eyes. Yet the “blaze” that started on September 07th of 2012 has not ended as of yet. Unlike my children’s lives which continue to add in years and numbers right in front of me. I’m not sure that the fire that took over our rental property that day will ever be extinguished, as we continue to pursue what we have always pursued; Self-Reliance.