• Farmer Stepheni

Needle Sticks and Trap Doors


We are lucky enough to have a good group of regular customers as well as a constant influx of people just hearing about the farm. One of the first questions is… If this was our original plans for the property. Did we always want to be farmers?

As some of you know, the answer is absolutely not.

We bought the house as our final move, our forever home. We intended to have an entertaining back yard, not a commercial farm. It was only after I got sick very prior and during deployment with Lyme and started intensive infusion treatment that we even started the garden. Which of course lead to the farm (you can read more about it here and here).

For a long time when people would ask “why”, I told them the short version, the … “we live in a food desert community and needed fresh organic food”, which of course is just part of the story.

But this week, Mike and I had dinner with my infusion Nurse. She was with from the start to the end. 5 days a week, for an average of 6 hours a day for 2 years. That’s 530 days, 3180 hours. Some relationships don’t go that fast or last that long.

During treatment we talked about everything. The minute details of Lyme, her mom and kids, my needle sticks, the celebrity gossips, my extreme anger towards being sick, how to find the end of the internet when all you have to do I sit with your arm connected for hours upon hours.

At dinner, we caught up on each other’s lives. Here mom has since passed, her kids are doing well. She asked a lot about the farm, including our “community”. I told her about the South Bay area and how National City is a food desert, and…

Well she of course already knew the long version of the story. That I was very sick and needed fresh organic food to strengthen my body to help fight the infection. How I had allergic reactions to commercially grown produce, how by switching to heirloom my reactions stopped and my treatment protocol was more effective, (and maybe more impactfully) that I will also have Lyme.

She reminding me that, others like me, fighting sensitivities and illness are my “community” too, and to them most areas feel like food deserts.

It sounds strange, but being remind of that was a bit overwhelming.

I think for all of us, it is easier to push the past and emotionally intense experiences away to the back of our minds. But those experiences are how we got to this exact moment. They opened the doors we never even saw (some of which may feel like trap doors). They allowed us to see all of what the world had to offer.

Her words were a gentle reminder, to remember where you came from and why your started, for it gave you more than you could have we ever dreamed. ~Stepheni Dickinson Farm


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