By Diane Dutchin The Afro News Vancouver
The Farmer: Max
It is usually never by chance meeting people; that are how I feel about it – encounters with others are meant to deliver a message to you, even if the immediate message or vibe you’re getting appears to be bad. If we pay attention there’s a lesson we can learn from meeting strangers by chance.
Well, here was Max – literally ran into him as he moved crates of fresh fruit and vegetables from a pick-up truck into a grocery store located in what we’d call “farm country”. I quickly apologized and stepped into the sunshine to avoid any further collisions. I lingered outside because it was a warm beautiful summer day and being out in the country away from the hustle, bustle and pollution of city life was refreshing.
Max returned to his pick-up to complete his unloading and delivery process.
After his last delivery he smiled in my direction and asked if I was visiting? I said yes, and a conversation evolved that led to finding out why a well educated young man was working as a farmer making only enough to live on, when he could be living large in the city wearing a suit and making more than enough money to live on.
Max’s educated profession in an accountant; he spent thousands of dollars and spent hundreds of hours invested into building a career because he was told that acquiring a highly recognized career was where it was at.
He made his parents proud; he excelled at his studies and spent 4 years after graduation working long hours and making lots of money.
So what happened to get you from there to here?
This is his story – I had great parents who challenged and motivated me to do my best and supported my decisions. I made the choice and did it in part because I wanted to make my parents proud because they are such great role models, and the other reason was I wanted to keep up with the careers of my close friends. So that’s why I ended up there. My epiphany moment came when a buddy of mine who made it big at a very young age who lost one of his arms in a bad motor cycle accident. His life immediately changed, and within a week mine did also.
I saw in an instant how life can be snuffed out in part or full; how we move around taking what we have for granted, how we sometimes don’t follow our heart because of pressure from within and without. Therein I realized how much I didn’t have a life even though on the outside it appeared like I did. I actually despised my job and discovered just how much I’d lost my way. I made the decision to get away to my family’s farm where I spent most of my growing days, and found that the memories created there came alive upon my return.
It was during my time away that I realized that this is what I was passionate about – being here, finding myself, loving this place, loving the chores, loving this life. Yes, it was so different from where I live, but this was peaceful and being there calmed my soul and I began to discover myself. Within 1month I had resigned from my job, sold my condo and moved unto the farm. The land was rich, and it was an easy decision to use the land to plant fruit and vegetables.
So, that’s it. I’ve been here for 6 years now and besides the passion and love for the place, and what I do. It has really given me back my life, I can stop and hear myself think, I can hear my heart beat, I can really enjoy and appreciate this gift of life because I’ve had a second chance to find out not only the difference between having a profession and a passion, but the opportunity to live in both worlds.
What would you say to anyone on the cross roads between the two choices? Take the road of passion and you’ll never regret it.
As we said our good byes I couldn’t help but think back to the difference in listening to Suzette and Max – Two things popped out at me; the tone of their voice and the look in their eyes. Suzette’s words were heavy and her eyes dull. Max’s voice was light and his eyes were alive.
My conclusion on this is that we equally have the right to choose, and if our first choice isn’t fulfilling, we still have the power to make changes to do what will add fulfillment to our lives. A profession and passion is equally the same thing, the only difference is how we’re impacted by what we do. At the end of the day it will affect your health in a positive or negative way;a it’s up to us to make the healthy passionate choice in whatever profession you choose.