By Danielle French


It has been nearly 1 year since I sold the farm. I remember someone saying to me: “don’t do anything for a year – you will need the time”. I thought – oh sure, maybe a few months seems reasonable but a year? That seems like a really long time. I can tell you that it is no time at all. It is time I never thought I needed and yet, I have needed every moment.

Change (for some) is great but change is hard. This transition from farm to city has been difficult. Honestly, I have no regrets, I love where I live, I know the move was the right one for me but I went from having a life of purpose and direction every day to a life with not much real structure other than walking the dogs and booking a pickleball court. 

Design your Escape;

I’m still in this transition and I dare say it’s going to take more time to find a rhythm. But in between the dog walking and adjusting to the new life in the city I carved out time to do something I had wanted to do for a few years. To take the two day master class that I called Design your Escape and offered several years ago in person –  online. Why not create an online course on starting your own event based business? I felt good about it and it offered a project that I could handle. 


Well, it turned out not to be as seamless a project as I thought and certainly presented some real challenges for me. There is no live audience, no real time human interaction, no one to laugh at an occasional joke. The process also brought out some insecurities I felt about where I was going with not only the course but myself and how my new purpose would evolve. 

I realize I have experience.

the big pivot

When I saw the first round of video footage – it was shocking just how different it was presenting information versus being in a public setting. Just me talking away about my experiences starting my business. Wow. It was a hard watch. But at the same time it was difficult to watch myself. I also realized,  jeepers Danielle, you have some things to say! You have something to offer. You have experience. I’ve now spent many months reviewing and guiding the video footage and I can happily say that it’s finally – almost finally – complete and I feel good about it. 

If you think you can do it, you can.

I know that so many people I meet are looking for a change whether it is a new life situation or retirement or simply a change of pace. It is not easy to make changes, sometimes the change happens to us outside of our control such as the repercussions of the pandemic, it is difficult to know what our new world will look like. It feels scary and uncertain. Something I said in the video I need to say to myself on a regular basis. While it is hard to shift, to jump into something new and embrace all that comes with it, there is that old adage of if you believe you can do it then you can, with a little hard work and a steadfast, focused outlook. So cliche, so true.

I am laying the groundwork for the next stage of my life whatever that will be and I do believe that just like starting South Pond Farms, this next stage too will find its way organically as I transition through this period. The video course is the beginning of something. 

I acknowledge I am living as an uninvited guest on the traditional Michi Saagiig Nishnaabeg Territory. We are located on the land associated with the Williams Treaty of 1923 and Rice Lake Treaty #20 of 1818.

Sign up to receive stories and updates