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Smashing Pumpkins and The Healing Power of Validation

“It was time to take the pumpkin out of the pot and eat it.
In the final analysis, that was what solved these big problems of life.
You could think and think and get nowhere, but you still had to eat your pumpkin.
That brought you down to earth.
That gave you a reason for going on.
Alexander McCall Smith

This quote makes me smile, reminding me that even during life’s great upheavals, the simple things keep us grounded, keep us going. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, sunrise, sunset, over and over they come, dragging us back from the storm to quiet our souls and nourish our bodies.

Thank you so much for the messages and comments of love and support regarding my post about the Duggar abuse story and the ATI Cult. Each one meant a great deal to me. XO

This week one news service after another has exposed more stories of lies, abuse, and cover-ups, giving voice to many who were victimized in that world. It has been incredibly healing. For the past 15 years we’ve been effectively silenced, told we were lying or exaggerating about what happened, that we needed to “get over it”, needed to forgive and confess our bitterness over the abuse we experienced.

No more.

Now places like CNN are telling our stories. They’re doing the investigations, they’re holding the leaders of these organizations accountable, they’re pressing for answers, and it has brought about much healing in our lives. The sort of healing that comes when victims are validated, their stories believed, their experiences acknowledged.

I hope very much that Josh Duggar’s victims, and anyone who has been abused, will also receive validation and find a safe place where they can grieve, heal, and thrive.

I also like the quote at the beginning of this post because our farm world has been all about pumpkins this week.

Good friends completed their pumpkin harvest and invited us to stop by and collect as many of the leftovers as we wanted. Such a gift!!

So Bear and I bundled up against the frigid wind and headed out to their paddock. We trudged through muddy hillocks and tripped over pumpkin vines and hauled two trailer loads of pumpkins back to our farm.

Our goats adore pumpkins, so we made their day as we hurled pumpkins onto the ground, watching them smash against rocks and break apart into brilliant orange pieces perfect for goat-nibbling.

Note: if you’re ever stressed about anything, smashing pumpkins is a marvelous antidote. 

By the second load we were so tired and sore we couldn’t be bothered with smashing anything, and simply rolled them off the back of the trailer.

We were able to rescue a few pumpkins that hadn’t been damaged by rains or frosts, and share them with friends. A few more are saved in my greenhouse, ready to be turned into soup, pie, or simply chopped up and roasted for pasta, pizza, or roast chicken.

This week I’m thankful for those who stand against abuse, who stand up for anyone who’s been abused, and kind friends who share food that comforts and sustains.


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Coffee and Crumpets - Even though it’s hard to relive the horror when these stories come back up, it’s great to know that it has resulted in some good. I am happy that it has helped with some closure for you and you were able to deal with it surrounded by love and support from your friends.
Your goats look so happy! I’d love to be able to smash a few pumpkins!

Ken Powell - I’ve never seen so many pumpkins in one place, Krista. Goats love pumpkins – didn’t know that either. Great story.

Hotly Spiced - I’m glad the victims are finally being heard and believed and that this is leading to a measure of healing and an ability to move forward. How lovely to be given the gift of all these pumpkins and your goats look like all their Christmases have come at once xx

dedy oktavianus - lovin pumpin all the way!!!
Dedy@Dentist Chef

Tandy Sinclair - I think you are going to have a bounty of pumpkins next year Krista 🙂

Nancy - What an incredible post. I’m sitting here shaking my head just wondering at the evil coverups and justifications that have allowed these things to happen over and over again. It’s just too terrible – but I’m glad you’ve found a small relief in pumpkin therapy which I can imagine was good for the body and soul. Your photos as always send me right into the paddocks with you.

Anna Johnston - I very much like that you speak up about the real issues, thank you Krista for that. 🙂
As for the goats in the orange pumpkin heaven…. All the heart feels.

mlleparadis - what a beautiful post on so many levels! glad it was a better week. and what a glorious idea. i will be growing pumpkins after reading this post. esp such gorgeous ones. for skunks to consume, sadly or riskily, we’ll see.

still more hugs and kisses!

thefisherlady - Your pumpkin smashing is also a good therapy or just for the joy of watching them burst apart… were you able to salvage seeds for roasting… I would be in absolute seed heaven having that many pumpkins!
The thing about past abuse is that the victims have suffered through all the years and even if counselling has helped, the memory and the sting returns incessantly for so many. So a predator says,”Oh but I have changed now… I am a different person…”. That will never take away the years of torment and the ruining of so many lives. The victim cannot just say, “Oh well, I guess its all good now, because you have changed.” That is not how it works… Yes one can learn to forgive but the forgetting just doesn’t ever happen.
I will never forget being attacked and raped. Yes, I have moved on and have a remarkably beautiful life, but the memory never really goes away. I have learned to walk into each new day for the gift that it is; I make new and marvelous memories and choose to leave the old and bad ones behind. How much richer a life would be not to have to remember some things. I am thankful for the courage people are having to bring pedafiles and abusers into the light that the darkness may be dispelled. Some days a good pumpkin throw is just what one needs.
Blessings to you Krista and Bear; there is so much fullness and beauty in your life, and mine. For that I am so thankful. We are blessed. Roast some seeds for me and munch them good.
Loads of love to you from Rocky Mountain Country

Krista - Thank you, @joanneeatswellwithothers:disqus I wish that too. But I am glad to be in this place of peace and rest. It’s been a long time coming and I am treasuring it. XO

Joanne (eats well with others) - I’m glad that some good has come out of all this, but definitely wish that none of it had ever happened to any of you!

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