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2022 Reflections, 2023 Renewed Hope

I’ve been reflecting a lot since harvest. There were many hard things, particularly in agriculture, that happened in 2022. Quick recap list were: Dec. 15, 2021 tornadoes and wind storm that began pivot destruction, dry winter and spring, high input costs and difficulty finding chemicals, wildfires, endless wind and dust storms, dry and cold planting season, numerous hailstorms, replanting crops, pivots throughout state needing replaced, drought, more wildfires, more wind, avian influenza, deep cold, and blizzards out west. There were also those who lost loved ones or had family/friends get sick or hurt. It seemed to be the year that kept on giving.

There were many blessings though too! Good crop prices and the benefit of insurance to help with homes, buildings, vehicles, crops were large blessings. Family and friends pulled together to cleanup destruction, patch homes, and get crops in the ground. For those who replanted crops, we witnessed a miracle in the fact that an entire growing season was re-started in mid to late June in two weeks! Seriously, think about that. With all the moving parts in ag, how chem was in short supply, the large area impacted, it truly was a miracle. I was so proud of how ag industry pulled together to make that happen! This year was taxing on mental health, and I heard and watched people reach out to each other to talk through the difficulties of the year. I’m also so grateful for our livestock and ethanol industries in Nebraska as markets for our crops. The feedlots were an extra blessing with the wet corn that was prematurely froze. There also was much learned, in spite of the fact it may not be what most of us set out to learn for the year!

Many of us have wanted to get to the end of 2022 and it’s now here. We each dealt with the year in different ways. Did we finish well? Each year will have its challenges and opportunities. How we choose to work through them can help us with perspective and build resilience for future hard times.

In reflecting on the way home from church one day, the word ‘character’ came to mind. 2022 was truly a character-building year!

Those thoughts were reinforced as I walked into the grocery store to find two farmers discussing the year with one mentioning the exact same thing. I googled the definition of character. It said, “the mental and moral qualities distinctive to an individual.” I’ve thought about the good things built in my character from the difficulties of 2022 and also areas I need to improve for the future. Reflecting on 2022 has helped me with personal and professional goal setting for 2023.

As you reflect:

  • How did your character build in 2022?
  • What areas could use improvement?
  • What did you learn in 2022 about yourself and the situations you went through?
  • How can you use what was learned in 2022 to plan for 2023?

Wishing you and your family blessings in 2023; a new year with new opportunities and renewed hope!

End of Year Reporting: The end of the year also means report time for those of us in Extension. Each year we need to justify the things we do in trying to help people. This year, I’d particularly appreciate any comments if you felt my blog posts or farm visits helped in regards to the hail damage. I know we get bombarded with surveys! So, if you’d consider taking time for this 5 question survey I’d greatly appreciate it. For those of you who’ve responded in the past, re-reading your comments encourages me throughout the year. Thanks!

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