Feeling Unfulfilled

Ogwen's cottage

I talked on my last post about feeling fed up and frustrated. Perhaps this is just the January blues, but it feels more than that.

Warning: This is a rather mopey, self indulgent post as a method of catharsis. If you’re after a Northerner moaning about tourists and writing book reviews, choose a different post.

Recently I’ve been feeling increasingly unfulfilled. We all need a purpose in life and our own personal motivation to carry on day by day and to make us feel satisfied and happy.

Mine has always been animals. Looking after and spending time with them. I’ve had my shihtzu for 9 years now and he’s been a constant source of amusement, exercise, adventure and compassion.

Through having him, I’ve also developed a passion for walking and photography. My perfect day would be spent going on an adventure, hiking a trail whilst taking photos of my dog (he’s very photogenic). I love the feeling of accomplishment, feeling nicely tired from getting fit, being outdoors and exploring new terrains.

I haven’t done as much walking since I moved to the Derbyshire Dales and got involved in farming. Most of my energy is taken up with tough, physical farm work. I still walk my dog four times a day (I don’t have a garden) but seeing as it’s just endless fields around us, the routes are limited and sometimes rather boring.

Plus my little dog is getting older now and he can’t handle the mountain hikes like he used to. I know he’s a shihtzu but he’s been up Kinder, explored the moorlands of the pennies and trekked all over Wales. Breed is not a limiting factor to walkies.

So the walking has taken a backseat. I used to take my dogs (I’ve had two “second dogs” over the years while I’ve had the shihtzu) and my mum’s collies to my local National Trust country estate three times per week for a good adventure. I do miss those days, but now that cows and farming are in my life, I enjoy that too.

Now my hobby of photography revolves around taking photos of the cows in fields.

I also enjoy other farm work like tractor driving, silaging, muck spreading, cleaning and going to markets and auctions. I love a bit of hard graft and adore spending time with the cows. However I still feel restricted.

The farm is my other half’s parents. They live there and we live half a mile away. So we have limited control over what happens on the farm.

I love ‘upcycling’ old junk and there’s endless available on the farm. I have had a go at dry stone walling (my mum has done all her own walls around her property) and I feel pride in adapting and improving handling systems, storage and general management systems.

But it’s not my farm.

I have to stop myself from being too invasive and tidying up my in-laws stuff and moving things, But in my mind there’s so much to do. That I have the energy to do. And long to do.

So while I enjoy farming, I wish I could do more. I feel held back.

Also last year I had so many trips and days out. I visited four new countries and traveled around England. We were so busy all year with trips out, family things and showing cows that we never stopped.

So this year feels like everything’s ground to a halt.

I find pleasure in planning things and I love to organise. However I feel restricted there. I do have a trip planned for Spring, which I’m looking forward to, but there’s not much more to plan or arrange.

Otherwise I always look forward to my big holiday of the year in Autumn. I live to travel, I adore it. I save as much money as I can all year to go on a big exotic holiday. Its what I look forward to and what motivates me to go to work each day.

This year my in-laws have booked to go away twice, on the only times we can also go away. As someone has to look after the farm, this means we can’t go away at the same time.

Also my mum has planned a family thing at the only other time we could possibly go away.

So I feel so frustrated that the thing I most look forward to all year looks impossible.

I know this probably sounds incredibly selfish and privileged. You’re probably right.

From my perspective I’m very well traveled. I’ve been all over the world throughout my childhood and into my adult life. I work hard and earn my own money. I pay for my other half’s holidays as he can’t afford to. Why can’t I spend my own money on what I want?

So that’s frustrating.

With all this spare physical and emotional energy, my body clock has started nagging me. I’m reaching thirty and starting to feel broody.

It feels anti-feminist and anti-career woman to say so, but I do.

I want kids. I think I’d make a decent mother. I love caring for other things and people and am desperate to do more.

I’ve gently, over the past few months let my other half know that I would be ready to start that journey. Because it is a journey into the unknown. I have been on the contraceptive pill for ten years now and have no clue if I’m fertile or not.

My other half says he’s not ready for kids for a few years yet.

So what am I to do with myself?!

Learn to ride a motorcycle? Take up lion taming? Run a marathon?

I need more focus in life. Something to aim for. Something that gets me excited and something to look forward to.

Any suggestions are welcome…!


9 thoughts on “Feeling Unfulfilled

  1. I completely understand how you feel and it is frustrating and demotivating especially when things have conspired to stop you doing what you enjoy doing. Can you research and book/save for a really epic holiday next year (surely after this year it’s your turn to go away?) My dog is now elderly and arthritic and he can’t walk the hikes we used to and I completely get that feeling, it’s a transition. I have returned to my yoga, is this something you could try in evenings (I follow YouTube videos and found it very good for purpose & perspective)? I wonder if doing a bit of an action board or chart listing all the things you enjoy/love and photos that inspire you and see if you can find a new venture that combines some/all of these? Good luck x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for being empathetic 🙂

      I guess I could research and save for an epic holiday… I think I’m just a bit impatient!
      It’s painful to see them age, isn’t it. What breed of dog do you have? I hate myself for feeling resentful that he can’t walk as far as he used to, when it’s not his fault whatsoever.
      That’s a wonderful idea! I did a yoga course on a retreat many years ago and loved it. I shall have a look on youtube 🙂
      The action board is a fab idea too, maybe I shall have a go this weekend x

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi, my name is Matt and I’m putting on an alternative food show in Derby. I would love to chat and see if you’d like to be involved in from a speaker perspective. I think many of the themes you talk about on the blog are typical of most people when thinking about their diet etc… drop me a message via info@crocstar.com


  3. It’s funny to me that in your feelings of frustrations and restriction you should start desiring motherhood… because it is in motherhood that I often feel restricted and frustrated.

    But I love these two kids I have. Some would say I’m a bad mom for admitting the feelings above, but I’m not. I love them dearly. I just long to travel and see more in life.

    Have to discussed with your other half the feelings you have of being restricted? The need for a bit more? It might help.

    The photo of you and your dog is lovely. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I guess I feel ready for that next stage in life… whatever new frustrations it brings!
      I can imagine motherhood must turn your whole world upside down?

      I think you’re a wonderful mother! I appreciate your honesty 🙂

      I’ve discussed feeling unfulfilled with him, but not feeling restricted, as such. I don’t want him to misinterpret my feelings as bitterness or resentment, as I am happy with the path we’ve both chosen and the life we have together, I just need more. (I encouraged him to give up a full time job to pursue his dream of farming)

      Thank you, Jasper is very photogenic at times 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh my goodness, motherhood does change life immensely… but I think I’m a better person for it. I’ve definitely become a whole lot more compassionate and a whole lot less selfish.

        It’s good you’ve talked a little about your feelings. Over time, you may feel more open to sharing those feelings of restriction. For now, it sounds like you have a good relationship. I think it is amazing that you encouraged his dream of farming. Anytime someone leaves something certain (employment) for something new it is scary. What an adventure for both of you!

        Liked by 1 person

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