For weeks after my diagnosis this spring, I wandered around like a zombie, not quite knowing what to do with myself.
No one expects to hear “you have cancer”. I was also gifted with the words…”it’s not curable, but it’s treatable”.
And since I never do things the easy way…why not add to the fun and throw a pandemic into the mix for good measure lol!
2020 was a doozy and one of my meds gives me “an excessive amount of words” (this is a nice way of saying I can’t shut up haha!).
So, if you want to bypass all the fluff and get right to the 2021 update, skip down to the bottom of this long-winded announcement.
I felt like my whole life was falling to pieces. My plans for the future were so uncertain.
Even with wonderful support from family and close friends, my head was reeling, my heart was heavy,
and my spirit felt shredded. There were so many unanswered questions.
I’m a pretty private person, so under different circumstances, I may have chosen to keep this news quiet. That wasn’t possible though, as I had already committed to gardening for 20 other families! One of the drugs in my “chemo cocktail” came with the warning
to stay out of the sun. Yeah right…I typically spend 9-12 hours a day working outside during the main growing season!
On top of that, we did not know how my body would react to months of chemo and its companion drugs.
The business I had poured my heart and soul into would need to undergo some very severe changes if it was going to survive my diagnosis.
After kicking around all sorts of different scenarios and ideas, we decided to reimburse our CSA shareholders and Loyalty Members. We felt an obligation to notify them early in the season to allow them to make other plans when it came to their food sources for the year. Some chose to attempt their own gardens, one family found another CSA, and many others became loyal customers at the Market we opened at the farm on Thursday nights.
Our Thursday Night Markets allowed us to provide the quality fresh chemical-free produce that our customers were accustomed to.
It also proved to be loads of fun and plenty of work! We had several vendors join us and we thoroughly enjoyed their company and friendship. An uncrowded open-air market seemed relatively safe from Covid and it was well received.
Multiple myeloma is a cancer of the plasma cells. They are responsible for fighting infections. Not a good combo with a threatening new virus roaming around! So, of course I had lined up ALL of our educational workshops for the month of June and every single one of them was canceled during the shutdown. Our monthly Little Sprouts programming was put on hold as well.
This seems to be a very long explanation for how we will once again be evolving out here on Pfanny’s Farm,
but please bear with me and my wandering “chemo brain” haha! Trust me… it’s a real thing!
Never fear…there is a happy ending so keep reading!
Life is still in turmoil as I aim for a stem cell transplant. I’m told that it is my best chance at getting a good “response”.
With myeloma, the doctors don’t use the word remission. The chemo drug used immediately before the transplant will wipe out ALL of my immunities-including those Covid antibodies I just earned darn it! I won’t be able to garden for an entire season because of the mold and spores that exist in good soil. That means no planting, mulching, weeding, harvesting, mowing etc.
I know, I know, I’m going to drive poor Farmer Pfanny crazy!
So I’m going to skip a whole lot of stuff and jump right to my point.
(I say after 9 paragraphs, but who’s counting?)
In 2021 Pfanny’s Farm will not offer Garden Shares or Loyalty Memberships. We are also not committing to Thursday Night Markets because we won’t have enough produce to offer on a regular basis. We do hope to hold sporadic markets as we are able. If I’m feeling well enough, the workshops that were canceled in 2020 will be revived in 2021 so we can show off our new venue area!
The old Library Lady in me sure misses the Little Sprouts programming, and I hope we can eventually reinstate those gatherings too.
Greenhouse tours will continue when possible, and we will welcome travelers through the Harvest Host and HipCamp
programs as we have in the past. Agritourism seems to be a good fit for us! 2020 was rough for so many people,
but there is always a silver lining, right?
Here comes the happy ending-or should I say, new beginning!
We will use this as an Airbnb, a workshop area, gift shop, and most importantly, a respite area for folks like me, who have experienced a life-changing diagnosis. It would have been so nice to have had some place to escape to, where I could clear my head and absorb that diagnosis, to think things through, or to not think at all! We want to share the serenity of our farm for this purpose.
I am so excited and am dreaming of all the possibilities!
We are still in the building stage so more details on this will be coming at a later date.
You can follow our progress by searching #MrsPfannysGardenCottage on Facebook and Instagram.
Our mission remains the same even though the farm is evolving~
♡♡♡The Mission of Pfanny’s Farm is to sustainably grow food, relationships, and community, while enjoying life’s blessings. ♡♡♡
Thank you all for your patronage through the years and for joining us on this journey.
We hope you can come and spend some time with us in 2021!