Posted by: Zoe Noel-Trapani
Soil. Shovel. Snap. Lift. Dump. The feeling of the wooden handle against my skin, sifting through the soil for potatoes, getting dirt underneath my fingernails…. There’s nothing like it! This is what I experienced everyday: the joy of getting to make the earth new, while gaining an understanding of food and culture that went beyond what I could have imagined. I found beauty in learning about different cultures and practicing Jesus’ love in real tangible ways.
This year has been one of deepened discovery, of learning to be fully human. As I look back at my time on the farm I get the opportunity to see all the ways it has encompassed in my life, and how everyday I was encouraged to embrace the fullness in experiencing both beauty and joy, as well as pain and sorrow.
Throughout the year I have learned to work past hard things to get to an understanding that I am more than just the completion of a task or the way I react when I am frustrated. It was about more than just checking the boxes off at the end of the day. By the end it was more about asking the questions, did I represent love, did I learn to communicate that love as I moved forward, have I learned to have eyes that see, ears that hear, and a heart that’s open to what’s going on around me. This has meant that I needed to have honest moments and hard conversations. I experienced moments where I owned that I did things poorly, but then with grace and love was shown that I was more than that. I had to have hard conversations that shaped my character and the person I am. I have learned to embrace all that I was made to be, for better or worse, and to hold onto the hope and faith that can bring real change.
In coming to the farm I came to learn about working with my hands, but what I received was a place to be loved. I found a place where I worked with people who treated me like family, people that wanted me to do well in this job, but more than that, they wanted me to do well in life. I had the opportunity to sit and watch passions and dreams become more alive each day. I felt cared for and accepted, even with all my flaws! I have loved deeply and been deeply loved by a community that I never thought I would find. I have had to be honest about who I am and who my maker is, what it means to be fully me and watch those around me do the same. I found that Beauty is in this place, where the shovel cracks the silence as we work the soil. Thank you.