Feb. 6 2020 09:15 AM

Just like we care for our cows, we owe ourselves some attention and concern.

We’ve survived the month of January and made it to February. What is it about that first month of the year that makes it just seem to drag on? There really does seem to be 734 days in January.

I’d like to blame the slowness of time on the season. Winter really does have a way of making everything difficult. Even here in the Pacific Northwest where we can’t truly claim to experience “real winter.”

While we certainly can’t control the weather, I think there’s value in acknowledging its difficulties. Nothing tires out the body like endless cold and added work. It leaves us feeling drained at the end of long days.

On the other hand, maybe it’s just the lack of sunshine that has the real effect. We are all definitely lacking in vitamin D by this time of year. The short days grate on the soul when the work for the day is started and ended in the dark.

Because dairy farmers are so good at caring for the needs of our herds in the different seasons, our own care and health always seems to come last.

So, how do you combat the winter blues? Making our physical and mental health a priority or even just a thought in this life is easier said than done. Just like we care for our cows, it’s important to not forget to take care of ourselves.

Darleen Sichley

The author is a third-generation dairy farmer from Oregon where she farms in partnership with her husband and parents. As a mother of two young boys who round out the family-run operation as micro managers, Darleen blogs about the three generations of her family working together at Guernsey Dairy Mama. Abiqua Acres Mann's Guernsey Dairy is currently home to 90 registered Guernseys and transitioned to a robotic milking system in 2017.