A Beautiful Future

“People rarely associate agriculture with women- especially young women. They don’t think about the woman working another job to help make ends meet, who spends her weekends moving cows, fixing fence, or burning the midnight oil during calving season.

Or the cowboy-girls, riding herd, mending fences, and breaking broncy colts. Running their own herds. Rarely do they think about the women driving big equipment, turning wrenches, or watching the markets day in and day out looking for the best time to sell their crops.

They forget about the ladies who spend their days cooking meals for harvest crews, and the one who still manages to cook a meal for branding while she helps in the pen.

They don't appreciate the moms who are raising their babies in the cabs of swathers and combines and on the back of cow horses, and who can't volunteer for school functions even if she is a "stay at home mom".

They don't understand why she deals with the broken promises, the dirty houses, the date nights and vacation plans tossed aside because the cows broke the fence or the combine broke down for the hundredth time this week.

They don’t see the dress pants with little flecks of cow manure stains on them, the high heels held together with Gorilla glue, the soles of her leather boots patched with duct tape, or the tears she cries when she has to choose between working cows or rocking her sick baby back to sleep.

She shows up to the cooperative meetings, soccer games, doctor appointments, and the office ready to work and ready to give her all. She is the backbone of an industry that is predominantly led by men.

She loves the land, livestock, and her family- and is passionate about this lifestyle, no matter how much others hate her for it.

She is the heart of the industry, and I truly believe women are the future of farming and ranching.

And what a beautiful future that gives us.”

~ Richelle Barrett


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