People have different visions of what farmers are. Some still think farmers look like Grandpa Joe with bib overalls tending to his chickens and pigs. Rid that vision because farmers are different today. The real truth? There is no “typical” farmer stereotype. In fact, other farm bloggers have also talked about it. Yes, farmers are as different as songs on the radio. My friend Sara blogged about women farmers and how they do wear makeup. Her inspiration came from a recent plane trip she took where she was told by a young boy that she did not look like a farmer because she wore makeup and he argued that “farmers do not wear makeup!” It’s a great read!
And just like her, I do not fit the “farmer stereotype” either:
1. I am a female.
Yes, not all farmers are men. Women can be farmers. Women bring a whole different dimension to farming and I truly believe agriculture is better for it. It’s fun for me to see young women, such as a Farmer’s Daughter and these four daughters from Oregon farms, coming back to the farm as equal farming partners with their farm families. “I am Woman, Hear me roar . . .” Okay, okay, I won’t break out in song.
2. I am a grandma.
Yes, you heard me. A G-R-A-N-D-M-A. You know, cookie baking, kiss the grandkid’s booboos, game playing, huggy kind of grandma. I have six grandchildren and I love them all and promise they will ALL know where their food comes from. Food that comes from all sorts of farms and oes not magically appear in grocery stores.
3. I was not raised on a farm.
Absolutely NO farming background. Yes, I was born and lived in a farming community but that doesn’t automatically qualifiy you as having a farming background. When I met my husband to be, I didn’t even know what a plow was and what it was used for. I can honestly say when I was young I had no desire to live on a farm, let alone be a farmer.
4. I did not always want to be a farmer.
As I was growing up, I stayed pretty persistent with #3. I did not want to live on a farm. I told my best friend in high school I would never marry a hog farmer. I mean, face it, pigs have a smell – farms have a smell. Why, oh why, would I ever want to live on a farm? But you know the old adage, “never say never“. All I can say is love is blind and I ended up marrying a pig farmer!
What was I thinking? I am a city girl, not a farm girl. Doesn’t GOD have the greatest sense of humor? But as you probably guessed, I started my transformation from city girl to farmer. Yes, I normally don’t refer to myself as a farm wife – I am an equal on our farm – a farmer. And I am proud of it!
5. I don’t wear the right attire.
When I am working on the farm, it is usually “tennies”, a t-shirt or sweatshirt and depending on the weather, I either wear shorts or jeans. No cowboy boots, no belt buckles and yes, like my friend Sara, I do wear makeup.
6. I am not a country music fan.
I make no apologies – it’s just the way it is. I do love and appreciate all types of music and I will listen to some country music. I just don’t love it! Take me to a Styx conert any day!
Farmer stereotypes need to be broken. I love that agriculture has room for all types of farmers! And I especially love that we have women in agriculture. Even though I never thought I would be a farmer growing up, God had a different plan for me.
And I am so grateful and glad he is more insightful and smarter than me.
And with that, let’s just celebrate all types of farmers . . . women included.